The surge in medical and cosmetic aesthetic technology has led to a market that’s flooded with new devices, products, and procedures, such as Smart Lipo — which all claim to be the “greatest and latest” best thing. But not all new technologies are better than the tried-and-true procedures that have stood the test of time.
Therefore, it’s important you do your due diligence in researching and sorting out all this new technology being marketed simultaneously to ensure they’re really as “great” as they claim.
As an example, what’s the difference between traditional liposuction and Smart Lipo, and is one better than the other?
What is Traditional Liposuction?
Liposuction (or lipo for short) is one of the most common surgical procedures performed each year in the U.S. Many individuals have areas of their bodies that they wish would be smaller or a different contour. But regardless of how much they exercise or how healthy they eat, they can’t seem to make any substantial improvements. And, for a lot of these people, the small pockets of fat can negatively impact their body satisfaction and confidence. If this is something you’re struggling with, traditional liposuction could be the answer.
While liposuction has seen advances and innovations over the past 40 or so years, the modern liposuction procedure dates back to 1974, with roots going back to the 1920’s.
Lipo is a minimally invasive treatment that helps remove unwanted fat from just about any area of your body, including your:
- Upper arms
It helps to improve your overall body contours. Doctors can perform liposuction by itself or in combination with other cosmetic procedures such as a:
It’s important to know, lipo isn’t a substitute for proper exercise and diet or a treatment for obesity. It’s also not an effective cellulite treatment.
What is Smart Lipo?
Smart Lipo, sometimes written as smartlipo, uses a type of medical device made exclusively for performing laser-assisted lipolysis. It also often called laser liposuction or laser lipolysis. The doctor makes a small incision and inserts a thin tube that contains the Smart Lipo laser fiber in targeted fatty areas.
The laser fiber passes on the thermal energy directly to your fat cells, disrupting the fatty tissue for simple removal. It melts the fat, which the doctor then removes with gentle suction. Along with this, tissue around the area starts tightening through coagulation and contributes to a smoother shape overall.
What are the Similarities Between Smart Lipo and Traditional Lipo?
There are some similarities between the two procedures with respect to their:
- Body areas: Both procedures can be used for flabby upper arms, love handles and double chin, but they both can also be used for all body areas.
- Weight loss: Neither traditional lipo or Smart Lipo is considered a weight loss procedure.
- Look and fit: Both procedures can help you look more defined and fit by removing the fat that covers your muscles.
- The number of treatments: Both procedures can be done in less than a couple of hours and require only one treatment.
- Type of procedure: While Smart Lipo is a little less invasive than traditional lipo, it’s still surgery.
- Anesthesia used: They both require anesthesia (although traditional lipo requires general anesthesia and Smart Lipo uses local anesthesia).
What are the Differences Between Smart Lipo and Traditional Lipo?
While both Smartlipo and traditional liposuction are effective for unwanted fat removal, there are some differences between them. These include in their:
- Technique: Traditional lipo uses physical manipulation and a cannula to suction your fat from under your skin. Smart Lipo uses laser heat for liquefying or softening the fat/
- Type of procedure: Smart Lipo is considered less invasive than traditional liposuction.
- Candidacy: Smart Lipo is more geared to individuals within 20 percent of their ideal body weight and is only struggling with a stubborn exercise- and diet-resistant pocket of excess fat, while traditional liposuction can help people who have more volume they’d like to reduce.
- Recovery: Traditional lipo can have a little longer recovery time with some swelling, bruising and soreness that could last several weeks. You may also need to use compression garments for up to six weeks. Smart Lipo usually provides a quicker recovery, but you still need to usually wait for a few weeks for strenuous activities and still need compression garments for four to six weeks.
Which is Best: Smart Lipo or Traditional Lipo?
Keep in mind, what really makes the difference is your surgeon’s hand, qualifications, and experience, not the device. Lipo, whether it’s laser-assisted or traditional, is a surgical procedure. Beyond having to meet “general surgeon” requirements, your San Francisco Bay Area liposuction doctor should be an expert in aesthetics (balance, proportion, symmetry) and beauty. Their favorite tool for fat removal and creating pleasing contours isn’t as important as their experience and qualifications.
If you’re looking for minimal downtime, don’t have much volume to remove, or would rather be awake during your procedure, Smart Lipo may be for you. However, if you require a good deal of volume removed and are comforted by a procedure that has been performed for nearly 40-plus years, traditional lipo is likely the better choice.
Everyone can benefit from liposuction, whether it’s traditional or Smart Lipo. Traditional lipo, however, has been around longer and is more well-established. Many patients prefer going with the time-tested procedure of traditional lipo.
But, no matter what, liposuction can be what leads you into a more balanced, healthier life. And, once it’s helped remove those fatty areas that exercise and diet wasn’t able to if could boost your confidence and motivation.
Request a Liposuction Consultation
If you’re interested in learning more about a tummy tuck and liposuction, contact San Francisco Plastic Surgery expert Dr. Sieber would love to help you. Dr. David A. Sieber is only one of the few in the San Francisco Bay area who is a double board-certified plastic and reconstructive surgeon.
Our friendly staff is here to assist you in setting up your appointment for your initial consultation and talk to you about your tummy tuck and liposuction options. We may even be able to combine the two. Therefore, if you’re ready to start loving the image you see in the mirror and gain more confidence, contact us today by completing our online form or calling us at (415) 915-9000.