By Rod Franklin

Patients who receive liposuction or liposuction with abdominoplasty might emerge from those procedures with metabolic profiles less attuned to cardiovascular disease and other complications, a recent study of 322 individuals who presented with a range of body mass indices has found.

According to Eric Swanson, MD, a plastic surgeon in Leawood, Kansas, decreases in circulating triglyceride levels and leukocyte counts in both men and women after fat-reduction surgery have a beneficial impact on the reduction of systemic inflammatory status, and might illuminate the role of subcutaneous fat relative to visceral fat in disease mechanisms and type 2 diabetes.

Swanson presented data from his prospective study at the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) 2011 annual meeting.

"Patients with normal triglyceride levels experienced no significant change after liposuction," he told Medscape Medical News. "However, patients with levels of greater than 150 mg/dL demonstrated a 43% reduction. In fact, 62% of these patients whose levels were at risk before liposuction had normal levels after liposuction."

Triglyceride levels above 150 mg/dL have been associated with an elevated risk for metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes, stroke, coronary artery disease, and peripheral vascular disease.

"We do know that the drop in triglyceride levels we found in these patients actually exceeded what can be accomplished medically," Swanson explains, "so it may be that there is a therapeutic benefit."

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[Source: Medscape]