While liposuction remains one of the most common cosmetic procedures performed in the United States, many people are confused about how the surgery is done and which technique is best.
There really isn’t general agreement, even among plastic surgeons, and one will see many different approaches discussed in the media or on the internet. At Salmon Creek Plastic Surgery, we have used standard liposuction techniques for many years but have also trialed both external and internal ultrasound assisted liposuction.
What is a SAFELipo Liposuction?
A few years ago, we began using a technique called “SAFELipo,” a surgical fat reduction procedure pioneered by Dr. Simeon Wall, a well-respected plastic surgeon in Louisiana. This method does not depend upon laser or ultrasound energy to break up the fat prior to removal, but rather uses specially designed cannulas (hollow tubes) to loosen the fat prior to standard suctioning, and then again at the end of the procedure to smooth the remaining tissues. We perform this surgery in our operating room under general anesthesia to ensure patient comfort.
This technique has proven very straightforward to do, and has resulted in a much nicer contour of the treated areas with less risk of residual lumps or bumps. The patients really like the results they are seeing with this approach and I have been delighted with the safety of the operation.
It’s important to note that liposuction is a highly individualized surgical procedure that requires careful consideration of your specific concerns and the areas in which you desire improvement. An evaluation of skin tone and elasticity, as well as fat density and distributions will determine appropriate techniques for your specific case.
All liposuction techniques require incisions in or near the area to be suctioned for insertion of an appropriately sized cannula. In some cases, incision may be so small that no stitches are required for closure.
When large amounts are suctioned from one area, compression garments may assist during the healing process to help skin conform to the reduced body contours. Secondary procedures may sometimes be recommended to reduce excess skin.
Alternatives to Liposuction
- For women who have gone through childbirth, you may be interested in returning to your pre-pregnancy look. To learn more about this type of comprehensive body contouring, see our Mommy Makeover page.
- If you are closer to your weight goals and are looking for a non-invasive procedure, we use truSculpt®, a comfortable, easy, and natural procedure that uses radio frequency waves to help remove fat and aid in body contouring.