Abdominal etching refers to a liposuction technique and possible fat transfer to create the appearance of sculpted abdominal muscles. This procedure interests many as they believe innovation in technology can do anything fast to get the look they desire. Why put in the time and effort to optimize your weight and build larger abdominal muscles when you can just pay for a procedure for the same results?
For reference, I have performed many thousands of liposuction procedures over the past four decades and have learned much about what is possible, what is safe, and what is “normal .”I have no problem offering my patients safe and reliable procedures that makes them motivated and happy. However, I can’t recommend abdominal etching to my family members or patients because it simply makes no sense on many levels, as I will explain.
First, the result in most patients appears unnatural and artificial (if not bizarre). Fat transferred to appear as muscle feels soft and looks like muffins on your abdomen. Do you know how long the results of abdominal etching last? I don’t, and I can tell you that most patients fluctuate in weight throughout their lives and that as we get older, we gain weight. This isn’t a good omen when it comes to finely sculpted abdominal muscles. Will it be possible to satisfactorily fix a botched abdominal etching procedure? How do you think you will feel when you did something that was a mistake and is impossible to fix?
The best candidate for abdominal sculpting with the appearance of a six-pack is a patient who already has well-developed abdominal muscles and a modest layer of overlying fat. In this patient, contouring the fatty layer on top of the muscles will expose the shape of the six-pack abdominal musculature. The most likely person seeking abdominal etching is someone who is not in the best shape, is likely well outside their ideal/healthy weight, and is looking for a quick fix to have a body more like their friends or favorite celebrities.
To be clear, I perform a type of chest contouring or chest etching each and every time I treat a gynecomastia patient. My published Zone Classification System and seminal paper on the Total Removal of Gynecomastia Tissue are all about sculpting up the male chest to a higher degree of refinement than has ever been seen in the history of gynecomastia treatment. It has been performed on many thousands of patients and has proven safe, effective, and makes for happy patients. I can’t offer my patients abdominal etching because I can’t say the same for that procedure. I hope this helps.
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