Consumer Health Information
Photo Researchers, Inc.
Liposuction involves inserting a needle through the skin and drawing out some of
the underlying fat. It is being done here to add definition to the abdomen. The area
which will be affected has been marked in purple.
While physicians may perform liposuction
on the abdomen, hips, thighs, calves, arms,
buttocks, back, neck, or face, it has never
been cleared for use on the neck or face.
1 / FDA Consume r Hea l t h In fo r ma t ion / U . S . F ood and D r ug Admin i s t r a t ion
AUGUS T 20, 2007
The Skinny on
Liposuction is the most
popular form of cosmetic
surgery in the United
States, according to the
American Society for Aesthetic
Plastic Surgery (ASAPS).
The 403,684 liposuction proce-
dures performed on Americans in
2006 represent a 128% increase
over the number performed in 1997.
Interestingly, this same procedure—
during the same year—was the top
cosmetic surgery performed on men
in the United States. In addition, the
383,885 liposuction procedures per-
formed on U.S. women ranked sec-
ond only to breast augmentation.
If you are considering joining the
millions of people worldwide who
have had liposuction, FDA’s Center
for Devices and Radiological Health,
which regulates the medical products
used in liposuction, suggests you
consider the following before having
• Liposuction is intended only for
body contouring. It is not intended
as a means of weight loss.
• During liposuction, body fat is
removed from under the skin with
the use of vacuum suction—either
with a hollow pen-like instrument
called a “canula,” or an ultrasonic
probe that breaks fat up into small
pieces and then removes it.
• While physicians may perform
liposuction on the abdomen, hips,
thighs, calves, arms, buttocks, back,
neck, or face, it has never been
cleared for use on the neck or face.
• Liposuction is also used in medi-
cal procedures such as reduction of