Laser-enabled liposuction provides great results for fat aspiration and body contouring in both men and women, says a new study. Many people who are interested in a body contouring procedure usually shy away when they hear the word ‘surgery’. But laser-assisted liposuction surgery with local anesthesia can appeal to such patients as the technology has proved easier, faster, safer, and a more viable alternative to traditional liposuction. This is borne out by the study 1000 Consecutive Cases of laser-assisted liposuction and suction-assisted lipectomy managed with local anesthesia by Christopher T. Chia and Spero J. Theodorou published recently in Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. A review of the case studies by these renowned plastic surgeons has been featured in the September 2012 issue of Cosmetic Surgery Times in the article Enlightening Combo – Liposuction with laser assistance and local anesthesia proves safe and effective.1
In their studies, plastic surgeons Dr Christopher T. Chia, M.D. and Dr. Spero Theodorou, M.D., demonstrate that laser-assisted liposuction (LAL) and suction-assisted liposuction (SAL) using local anesthesia are safe and efficient procedures for the right candidates with localized fat distribution or lipodystrophy. The plastic surgeons recently reported on a total of 1500 consecutive cases of office-based, laser-enabled liposuction using local anesthesia.
Details of the Study
The study focused on patients aged between 18 and 62 who had laser liposuction treatment using Smartlipo on various areas of the body. The most commonly treated sites were the abdomen (33 percent) and flanks (24 percent). Thirteen other body areas were also treated.
The volume of fat aspirated ranged from 50 mL to 1400 mL. The study was conducted in an over a 30 month period. Three different modalities of Cynosure’s Smartlipo technology featuring different laser wavelengths were used for three sequential sets of 500 cases.
•The first set used the 1064 nm single wavelength (Smartlipo)
•The second set used the 1064/1320 nm dual wavelength (Smartlipo MPX)
•The last set used 1064/1440 nm wavelength combination of the triple wavelength laser (Smartlipo Triplex)
The different wavelengths target different issues. For instance, it was found that the combination of the 1064 and 1440 nm wavelengths was especially effective for fat emulsification. Besides breaking fat apart, the laser energy provides for better tissue contraction and skin tightening effects. Only a few cases were performed suction-assisted liposuction as laser assisted lipolysis proved safer, and more effective.
The liposuction treatment was performed in an established Manhattan-based American Association for Accreditation of Ambulatory Surgery-accredited office-based practice run by the plastic surgeons.
Benefits of Laser Assisted Liposuction
The results of the study by Dr Chia and Dr. Theodorou, both consultants for Cynosure and Invasix, clearly show that laser-assisted liposuction with local anesthesia provides more enhanced results than with traditional liposuction.
•Minimally invasive technology
•Minimal complications (less than 1 percent)
•No contraindications based on skin type (patients with darker skin may experience some temporary hyperpigmentation at the incision sites)
•Slow infusion of tumescent anesthetic solution minimizes discomfort from tissue distension
•Patient stays awake with local anesthesia
•Return to normal daily activities by day two (post-op)
Only about 7 percent of the patients in this study required a touch-up after surgery. Any issues were limited to the initial cases. Burn cases were just 0.27 percent and only one patient experienced seroma and hematoma.
Eighty percent of the patients in the study were women, though the proportion of men opting for liposuction has increased. Dr Chia and Dr Theodorou report that the number of procedures performed per patient is also rising. All this goes to prove that laser assisted liposuction with local anesthesia is a great alternative to traditional liposuction using general anesthesia.
Ref: 1 Enlightening Combo, Cheryl Guttman Krader, Cosmetic Surgery Times - September 2012
About the Author
Plastic surgery practice in Manhattan, New York City (NYC) specializes in providing minimally invasive liposuction surgery using advanced technologies such as SmartLipo Triplex, BodyTite™, and VASER 2.0.