Calf & Ankle Liposuction

Ankles, Cankles, and Calf Liposuction

The ankles and calves are some of the most resistant weight loss areas on the body. Typically, patients who have a build-up of fat in this area of the body, are genetically predisposed to cankles. The word “cankle” is a popular term use to describe thick ankles. It comes from combining the words “calf” and “ankle”. Before liposuction treatments evolved that could treat this area of the body, there was little that could be done about cankles. At the Chicago Liposuction by Lift Body Center, liposuction treatment is all we do! We’ve developed specialized techniques to target ankle and calf fat with skill and precision that far surpasses what non-specialists can do.

About Ankle, Cankle, and Calf Lipo

Over the past 20 years, liposuction of the calf and ankles or “cankles” has become much more popular. At the Chicago Liposuction by Lift Body Center, we offer Water Lipo, a special liposuction technology that uses water pressure to dislodge fat cells from targeted areas of the body. Waterlipo™ is extremely safe and gentle and it produces stunning results. For cankle fat, Waterlipo™ is an extremely effective treatment that’s much less traumatizing to surrounding skin and muscle tissues than traditional liposuction.

Liposuction of the calves and ankles must be performed together. In other words, it isn’t possible or desirable to target just the ankles or just the calves with liposuction. Rather, our doctors consider the patient’s calves and ankles as a whole unit. The entire lower leg must often be sculpted to achieve natural-looking results. Some patients could also benefit from knee and thigh liposuction during the same procedure.

Our doctors at the Chicago Liposuction by Lift Body Center pay special attention to the patient’s overall body proportions in order to create complementary proportions of the calves and ankles to the rest of the patient’s physical features. We want to enhance the patient’s appearance by highlighting strengths and downplaying weaknesses. Using Water Lipo, we can achieve the best results possible with the least amount of downtime at an affordable price.

The placement of incisions is an important consideration for liposuction of the calves. At the Chicago Liposuction by Lift Body Center, we place two incisions at the top of the calf, just below the knee joint. One incision is made at the front of the calf while other is made at the back. Through these two small incisions, the doctor is able to target the entire calf region and sculpt the lower leg so that it has a natural, shapely appearance that’s in proportion with the rest of the body.

Incisions for ankle liposuction are made on each side of the ankle. The ankle is a small region, but our doctors must use precision to avoid causing a dimpling effect in this area. The use of Waterlipo™ allows for more precision and fewer complications because this procedure is much gentler on the various tissues in the ankle joints. After the procedure, patients see dramatic changes in the contour and size of the calves and ankles. The results often have a profound impact on the appearance of the rest of the body because we tailor our procedures specifically to each patient’s needs.

Who Is the Ideal Chicago Liposuction Candidate ?

The ideal candidate for cankle liposuction surgery is in good general health. Our patients often come to us because they’re self-conscious about the way their calves or ankles look. Patients with realistic expectations about what the procedure can accomplish for them tend to be very happy with their results.

Cankle liposuction patients need to fit a particular profile to benefit fully from this procedure:

  • Patients should not have a life-threatening illness
  • Patients should not smoke or drink heavily.
  • Patients need to be within 30% of their ideal weight.
  • Patients should follow a reasonably healthy lifestyle.

Patients should not see variability in the size of their ankles from day-to-day or hour-to-hour. In other words, patients whose ankles get thicker and thinner from one day to the next may not be able to benefit from liposuction. Rather, this problem indicates that the patient may have a problem with fluid retention and should see a general practitioner.

It’s important for patients to understand that calf and ankle liposuction is not a weight loss procedure. Often, the volume of fat that’s removed from the body during liposuction is small and patients only see a modest reduction in their overall weight following the procedure. But some patients do seek out cankle liposuction as a way to jumpstart a healthier lifestyle and boost motivation to start a diet or develop healthy exercise habits. It is important for patients to be in good health before the procedure, however.


At the Chicago Liposuction Clinic, our goal is to provide patients with the best possible results using the safest techniques that lead to the fastest recovery.

At the Chicago Liposuction by Lift Body Center, we use an innovative technology known as AwakeLipo to anesthetize patients. This technology uses a carefully calibrated combination of local anesthesia and sedation that allows patients to be pain-free and very relaxed during their procedure, but still conscious and aware. Patients are very comfortable throughout the procedure, but because they can be awakened and they can still move and reposition themselves, surgeons are able to get better results from the surgery. And by using AwakeLipo rather than general anesthesia, the initial recovery procedure progresses much more quickly.

Patients should plan to rest for at least the first 24 to 48 hours after their cankle Waterlipo™ surgery. Waterlipo™ is very safe and gentle, but during the first two days after the procedure, the traumatized tissues will begin to heal themselves and getting plenty of rest can help make this process go faster. Some patients experience some discomfort during these initial days of healing. Our doctors will prescribe pain medication to lessen the discomfort. After the first week of recovery is over, most patients report very little pain and discomfort. Within 2 days to 1 week after the procedure, most patients can return to work.

Patients may experience some side effects from Waterlipo™ including:

  • Inflammation
  • Bruising
  • Skin sensation changes
  • Bleeding
  • Tissue fluid drainage
  • Soreness

Side effects typically resolve within 1 to 3 weeks after the procedure. Most patients return to their normal daily routine within 2 weeks after surgery.

It’s vital that patients take good care of themselves during the entire recovery period which usually lasts from 4 to 6 weeks. Below some of the most important aspects of recovery that patients should focus on in order to get the best results from their procedure.

  • Wear the Compression Garment:The surgeon will ask the patient to wear a compression garment 24 hours per day every day for at least one week after the surgery. The patients should only remove the garment to shower and then put it back on. After 1 week of recovery, patients can often wear the garment for fewer hours of each day, but it’s important to follow the doctor’s instructions. Wearing the compression garment provides support to traumatized tissues which helps them heal properly.
  • Avoid Strenuous Exercise:During the recovery period, it’s good to move around and do activities such as light walking. Gentle movements performed at a reasonable pace helps keep the blood circulating, which can promote the healing process. But strenuous exercise should be avoided without the doctor’s permission.
  • Eat a Healthy Diet:By eating healthfully, you can hasten the process of healing considerably. Eat a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables, nuts, and whole grains to get the best results from your procedure.
  • Stay Hydrated:By drinking plenty of water, you can promote the healing process and detoxification of the body after your procedure.
  • Take Prescribed Medications:Taking pain medications may be optional, but you need to be sure to take all other prescribed medications on schedule.

Before and After Photos of Ankles, Cankles, and Calf Lipo

Cankle liposuction is always performed according to the patient’s unique anatomical and medical needs. By using a customized approach with each patient at the Chicago Liposuction by Lift Body Center, we’re able to sculpt this region of the body with precision and approach the surgical procedure with the goal of achieving outcomes that capitalize on the patient’s natural beauty.

During the initial consultation, our doctors talk with patients about their medical history, their goals and expectations for the surgery, as well as financial considerations. The patient will have the opportunity to ask questions and address concerns about the procedure and the doctor will do a thorough evaluation of the patient’s skin elasticity and develop a treatment plan based precisely on the patient’s needs.

Because every patient’s needs are different, final results vary as well. At the Chicago Liposuction by Lift Body Center, our goal is to highlight each patient’s natural beauty to develop pleasing curves and proportions.

Below are before and after photos of patients who have received cankle liposuction surgery:

Liposuction Cost and Financing

Waterlipo™ procedures at the Chicago Liposuction by Lift Body Center start at $4,000 for an average-sized female. The cost varies according to the amount of fat to be removed. Many patients choose to combine liposuction treatment of the ankle and calf with the treatment of other target areas such as the thighs or abdomen. By targeting more than one body area during the same surgery, patients see a significant cost savings (as a result of discounts that we offer) and experience less downtime than if they were to target more than one body area during separate surgeries.

The total cost of cankle Waterlipo™ surgery varies from one patient to the next depending on the following factors:

  • Quantity of fat to be removed
  • Quantity and cost of pre-op laboratory tests
  • Quantity and cost of prescription medications needed before, during, and after surgery
  • Size of the targeted areas of the body
  • Amount of time required by the surgeon to complete the procedure

Prices compared to SmartLipo –

To make the cost of our procedures affordable for just about any budget, we’ve partnered with multiple lenders including United Medical Credit who are available to offer financing plans that are based off each patient’s financial situation. United Medical Credit offers monthly payments plans with fixed interest rates that are fee-free. Most patients are able to find a payment option that will work for them.

For more information about the cost of liposuction, please visit our Basic Liposuction Cost Guide page for more information about financing options.

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Safe Liposuction

Waterlipo™ is a safe and gentle procedure. Traditional liposuction, by contrast, poses much higher risks and safety issues and can cause much more extreme post-op side effects. Waterlipo™ is a minimally invasive procedure that can be performed under just a local anesthetic and sedation. But despite its safety profile, there are still risks involved with the procedure. And it’s important for patients to fully understand these potential risks.

Patients who would like to learn more about Waterlipo™ risks are welcome to visit our Liposuction Safety page.

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