Types of Liposuction
Patients opting for liposuction surgery have plenty of different techniques and options available to them, depending on their needs, expectations and the part of the body where the liposuction will take place. Different parts of the body store different types and amounts of fat, meaning that better aesthetically pleasing results can be achieved by using the proper type of liposuction.
SAL or Suction Assisted Liposuction
Suction assisted liposuction is the traditional type of liposuction where the surgeon breaks down fatty deposits with the use of a cannula (a hollow tube). This is the simplest type of liposuction available for patients.
Tumescent liposuction is similar to suction assisted liposuction, with a slight difference. Large amounts of anesthetic fluids are used in order to make the tissue swollen or tumescent, making it easier for the doctor to remove the fat.
SmartLipo or Laser Assisted Liposuction
Laser assisted liposuction is similar to traditional liposuction techniques with the only difference that a laser is used to further break down fatty tissue before suction is applied to remove it. The heat generated by the laser will melt fat, tighten skin and coagulate blood vessels within the skin. It can also make the recovery process easier for the patient, contributing for a quicker recovery with reduced bruising and a better looking skin, compared to other liposuction procedures such as suction assisted liposuction. SmartLipo can be performed under local or general anaesthesia, as is the case with other types of liposuction. Being a more complex procedure, laser assisted liposuction should be performed by the most experienced of plastic surgeons.
VASER Liposuction or Ultrasound Assisted Liposuction
VASER liposuction is similar to laser assisted liposuction with the only difference being that VASER liposuction uses ultrasound energy in order to break up fatty tissue within the liposuction area. The doctor creates the necessary incision and a special cannula fitted with a low frequency device is inserted through the incision in order to emulsify the fatty tissue. The fat is then removed through traditional suction techniques. VASER liposuction provides some advantages such as reduced bruising, reduced swelling and reduced blood loss from the procedure, the only drawback being that it requires a larger incision to accommodate for the ultrasound device. That being said, this technique is recommended for areas such as the abdomen, thighs or buttocks.
Power Assisted Liposuction or PAL
Power assisted liposuction is a great choice for patients with a high volume of fat that has to be removed. Similarly to VASER liposuction, power assisted liposuction uses an improved cannula, fitted with a vibrating device which breaks up fatty tissue before removing it through suction.
High Definition Liposuction or HDL
High definition liposuction is a relatively new technique through which the underlying muscle is defined through fat grafting and selective liposuction. This is a more time consuming procedure, compared to other techniques but the results tend to be more aesthetically pleasing.
This content is written and reviewed by our medical content team in January, 2019.