What is Smartlipo?
by Dr. Victor Perez
Smartlipo is the name given to a Laser liposuction machine by their manufacturer (Cynosure). Because I like to be on the cutting edge of technology, I have been offering SmartLipo laser liposuction at my Overland Park office since 2009. I was the first to offer Smartlipo MPX to clients in the area and I have been helping otherwise healthy patients remove the excess pockets of fat around their body’s problem areas that they have not been able to eliminate through diet and exercise alone.
So what is Laser Assisted Liposuction?
Laser Assisted Liposuction is like traditional liposuction; however it utilizes one extra step. This extra step consists of using a small glass fiber that applies laser energy directly to the adipose tissue under the skin. This laser energy will translate into heat, which causes the fat cells to burst and die, coagulates small blood vessels, and with time, will stimulate the fibroblast cells of the dermis to form new collagen, thus leading to skin tightening.
Traditional liposuction however is performed in only two steps. First, a dilute solution of anesthetic fluid is injected into the area to be treated, numbing the area and preventing bleeding. (This liquid is called tumescent fluid and is composed of normal saline mixed with a local anesthetic such as lidocaine and epinephrine. These two agents work to numb the tissue and vaso-constrict small vessels.) Second, suctioning of the fat cells is performed using a sterile surgical instrument called a cannula. This sterile metal tube with holes at one end is connected to a suction machine. Excess fat is then gently suctioned from the region. There is very little pain involved during tumescent liposuction and, due to the lasting effect of the anesthetic solution, very little post operative pain. Most of my patients require minimal pain medication following their liposuction.
Laser Assisted Liposuction is performed with the two steps of traditional liposuction in the same fashion, but we add one middle step, in which we apply laser energy into the treated areas. By applying this laser energy in two different layers, superficial and deep, fat cells are destroyed and adjacent cells become looser, making them easier to be removed during the next step of suctioning. This laser energy also coagulates small vessels under the skin, decreasing the amount of bleeding, which leads to decreased edema. This is the reason why there is less bruising and swelling with the Smartlipo technique as compared to traditional liposuction.
With tumescent anesthesia liposuction, our Overland Park and Kansas City patients are able to walk out of their procedure with no side effects from general anesthesia and resume their normal activities within days of treatment. In fact, most liposuction patients can resume normal walking the day of the procedure. If you would like to learn more about tumescent liposuction at our office in Overland Park, Kansas, please contact my scheduling coordinator.
Be Smart when choosing a Smartlipo surgeon!
Any individual can claim to be a doctor, cosmetic surgeon or plastic surgeon. You should make it your first priority to check a physician’s credentials. A doctor’s training and certification should be appropriate to the planned procedure. Certification by The American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS) ensures in-depth surgical training in all aspects of plastic surgery. Membership in The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS) means a surgeon is ABPS-certified and has met additional requirements for continuing education and experience in cosmetic surgery.