What Everyone Should Know About Liposuction

Liposuction is a common plastic surgery procedure that removes fat from specific areas of the body; here’s what you should know

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ATLANTA, Oct. 3, 2011 – Liposuction is a body contouring procedure, not a cure for obesity. The results are judged with a mirror and not a scale. The procedure is ideally suited for men and women with localized fat deposits that are resistant to diet and exercise. Men typically want their “spare tire” and excess fat on their chest removed, while women want their abdomen, hips, and thighs reduced.

Liposuction has been marketed heavily to the public under various names, so there may be confusion regarding the merits of each particular brand name. Is “smart lipo,” for instance, really “smarter” than the proven methods? First, let’s dispel the notion of the safety of local anesthesia. Relying solely on local anesthesia could have deadly consequences for some patients.

Advanced Aesthetics believes that safety is enhanced when liposuction is performed by a board-certified plastic surgeon on a carefully screened patient, in the correct facility (e.g., an operating room), and with the appropriate anesthesia to keep the patient comfortable and stress-free. Like most Atlanta plastic surgeons, Advanced Aesthetics uses general anesthesia or heavy intravenous sedation for patients in addition to local anesthesia. Local anesthesia is a basic step for all of their liposuction procedures, but it is not the only anesthesia.

Liposuction techniques include two to three steps:

1. Infiltration (tumescence), where local anesthesia with adrenaline is injected into the fat to numb the tissue and constrict the blood vessels in order to minimize blood loss.
2. Emulsification (the optional step), which breaks the fat tissue into a “slurry” for easier removal. This can be accomplished with ultrasonic or laser light energy.
3. Aspiration (suction), where the fat is removed with a specialized cannula (or tube).

Here is a list of various types of liposuction:

  • Tumescent Liposuction is the standard two-step procedure of Tumescence and Aspiration. The Atlanta plastic surgeon injects the tumescent mixture into the target site, and then the fat is removed by suction. This proven method is still considered safe and effective today.
  • Power Assisted Liposuction (PAL) is a two-step technique, but relies on a machine to produce a rapid and regular cannula motion that helps the surgeon perform liposuction with less physical exertion.
  • Ultrasonic Assisted Liposuction (UAL) is a three-step technique that uses ultrasonic energy to emulsify the fat. A metal probe is used to transfer ultrasonic energy to liquefy the fat. The fat is then easier to remove; however, complications (such as burns or scarring from the ultrasonic energy) can occur.
    • Laser Liposuction is a three-step technique that uses laser energy to melt targeted fat, after which it is suctioned out. This technique has many variations, such as SmartLipo, LipoLite, and CoolLipo. Each method uses a different laser light wavelength.
    • Vaser Liposuction is a three-step technique that uses sound waves instead of laser heat to treat and loosen fat, which is then suctioned away.
    • Water Jet Assisted Liposuction is a two-step technique that uses a pressurized stream of saline solution to loosen for its infiltration and remove fat tissue.

    No procedure has been scientifically proven to have better results than the “standard” Tumescent Liposuction. Consumers are encouraged to do their homework and make sure their surgeon uses a safe, proven method in an accredited operating facility.

    After your Atlanta liposuction, your recovery time will vary, depending on the extent of your procedure. Most patients stay on pain medication for 3-14 days. You can usually start full activities after 3 weeks. Most swelling subsides in 4 weeks, but your final results will not be apparent until 3-4 months after surgery.

    About Advanced Aesthetics, PC: Advanced Aesthetics is one of the most successful Atlanta-area cosmetic surgery practices, with offices in four south Atlanta locations: Fayetteville, LaGrange, McDonough, and Newnan. Advanced Aesthetics and Truffles MediSpa share the building at One Prestige Park, 874 West Lanier Avenue, Suite 100, Fayetteville, GA 30214. They can be reached by phone at 770-461-4000 or athttp://www.plasticsurgerycorner.com.

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