SmartLipo Laser Body Sculpting
What is SmartLipo?
Developed by Cynosure, Inc. in 2006, SmartLipo is a type of liposuction treatment performed using advanced laser-assisted technologies. Also referred to as Smart Liposuction and Laser Liposuction, the procedure has gained in popularity since being approved by the FDA in 2009 as an alternative to traditional liposuction.
Vs. traditional liposuction
While both SmartLipo and traditional liposuction are effective at removing fat, there are a few key differences.
- Technique: Traditional lipo uses a cannula to suction fat from beneath the skin. SmartLipo uses a laser heat to soften or liquefy the fat, making it easier to remove with the cannula. This method typically results in less bruising.
- Skin Tightening: Liposuction alone does not provide any skin tightening benefits. Because of this, there is an increased risk of dimpling or sagging after the procedure, particularly with older patients. SmartLipo uses laser heat that provides an added benefit of tightening the skin.
- Recovery: Traditional lipo involves a longer recovery period and the use of compression garments for up to 4-6 weeks. SmartLipo patients usually experience full recovery in a few days, and only need to wear compression garments for a week.
SmartLipo is primarily used for smaller areas of the body that need to be contoured. The most common body areas treated include the neck, face, arms, chest, lower torso and knee joints.
Are you a candidate?
Ideal candidates are those looking to minimally improve their appearance through the removal of fatty deposits that have collected in the so-called problem areas. In addition, you may be a good candidate if you are:
- In good overall health Healthy no major medical issues
- Near your ideal weight but have specific areas you wish to target for fat removal
- Have good skin elasticity
- Have realistic expectations
If you are morbidly obese or significantly overweight, you are unlikely to be a candidate for the procedure. In this case, you may want to consider weight loss surgery.
If you think you might be a candidate or wish to discuss your options further, consult with an experienced plastic surgeon for more information.
The procedure is typically performed in less than an hour, after which the patient may return home. It is most often performed under local anesthetic, though general anesthesia may be requested.
SmartLipo uses laser energy to break down fat deposits through a process called lipolysis. Lipids are liquefied and removed through a small incision made in the skin. The procedure is relatively pain-free, with only a minimal amount of discomfort and light pressure expected.
After the procedure, a compression garment may be used after treatment to assist with recovery.
A single treatment should yield visible results within one week after surgery, though full healing time is likely to take several months.
Slight bruising may be present, though patients are typically able to return to normal activity within a couple days after treatment.
Scarring should not be an issue given the small size of the incision.
When will you see final results?
Visible results can be seen within the first week, but it may take 6-8 months for all the swelling to resolve and scare tissue to soften.
What does it cost?
The average cost of SmartLipo ranges from $1,500 to $7,500 per area.
The procedure is considered elective, and therefore not covered under health insurance.