Power-assisted lipoplasty is an alternative to the traditional liposuction procedure. It uses a technological device along with a special cannula to produce vibrations that break up the fat within the targeted area. These rapid vibrations allow for a faster and gentler removal of fat with less trauma to surrounding tissues, as it reduces the amount of force that needs to be exerted by the doctor and allows for a more precise and thorough fat removal.
Safe and proven effective, the power-assisted method of liposuction received FDA approval for general use in 1998. It provides some significant improvements over traditional liposuction in that it eliminates the need for the surgeon to manipulate the movements of the cannula, lowering the risk of damage in the area and resulting in a higher degree of accuracy. This method is often used in conjunction with other varieties of liposuction to produce the most aesthetically pleasing results.
Power-assisted lipoplasty is a successful technique for the removal of stubborn areas of fat on the arms, waist, chin, hips, buttocks, thighs, abdomen and neck. It is effective for both small pockets of fat in hard to reach locations as well as larger fat deposits. Good candidates for this procedure include men and women who are close to their ideal body weight but have one or more deposits of fat that are not in proportion to their body and do not respond to diet and exercise.
Power-Assisted Lipoplasty Procedure
The power-assisted lipoplasty procedure is performed using the same basic strategy as traditional and tumescent liposuction, involving injecting saline and a local anesthetic to expand the area before the cannula is inserted. The cannula is a thin tube that is attached to a machine that provides suction to the site. It gently and effectively removes fat from the targeted area while tightening surrounding tissue to produce a slimmer and more defined body contour.
The low energy power is typically provided by electricity, which is used to efficiently suction out the fat tissue and fibrous matter quite thoroughly. The motion of the cannula in power-assisted lipoplasty helps it to move safely through the tissue at the treatment site and target only the fatty deposits, leaving nearby structures unharmed. There is no heat involved in power-assisted lipoplasty, so there is no risk of burns or heat damage to any tissues or blood vessels in the area during this procedure.
Advantages of Power-Assisted Lipoplasty
Power-assisted lipoplasty has several advantages over traditional liposuction, including:
- Gentler on the tissues at the treatment site, often resulting in a lower occurrence of post-operative swelling, bruising and soreness
- Less overall trauma, with a faster healing process and shorter recovery period before normal activities may be resumed
- Less time spent in surgery since the power-assisted tools can clear the fat deposits more quickly and efficiently
- Smaller incisions can be made because the devices used for power-assisted lipoplasty are typically smaller and narrower than those required for traditional procedure methods
Results of Power-Assisted Lipoplasty
Power-assisted lipoplasty provides patients with highly customized and precise results. It allows the surgeon to produce a natural, smooth contour that satisfies patients’ expectations very well. In addition, the smaller incisions are easier to place in natural creases of the skin and other concealed places, and they result in less scarring after the procedure. The recovery is brief and patients usually report experiencing little discomfort. While some effects of the lipoplasty will be apparent immediately, the final outcome is often not totally visible until a few months after the procedure, when all signs of swelling have completely subsided.