SmartLipo in the San Francisco Bay Area
Do you have pockets of fat that simply won’t go away, despite your best efforts?
Sometimes bulges of fat develop in places that just won’t respond to diet or exercise: and once they form, they’re virtually impossible to eliminate. If this sounds familiar, liposuction might be a good choice for you and if you’re thinking about liposuction, SmartLipo is an excellent option to consider!
SmartLipo is an FDA-approved laser liposuction technique that was introduced in 2007 and has quickly become popular with plastic surgeons and patients, largely because it’s faster and less painful than traditional liposuction. Not only does it require very little downtime, it also causes less swelling, leaves minimal scarring, and even tightens the skin in the area where it is performed. SmartLipo is so minimally invasive that a patient can be awake and alert during their surgery, and walk out on their own afterward – no sedative or overnight stay is necessary. It is sometimes even referred to as “lunchtime lipo,” since it can be performed so rapidly, the incision is so tiny, and the recovery time is so short.
What is the difference between tummy tuck and liposuction? Dr. Rajagopal answers on KRON 4′s Body Beautiful:
How Does SmartLipo Work?
With SmartLipo, a small laser pinpoints and liquefies the fat cells and then the cannula, a hollow tube, suctions out the fat being removed. Since the fat is dissolved before it’s removed, the cannula doesn’t have to be very big to be able to remove it…it’s about the size of a ballpoint pen. This smaller size means reduced bruising and swelling, and helped by the laser, serves as a visual guide which allows surgeons to move the cannula more precisely than they can move the cannula for traditional liposuction. The SmarLipo laser also stimulates the body to produce more collagen and elastin in the area treated, translating to firmer, smoother skin post-surgery; and the wavelength it operates on targets and seals your red blood cells as the laser moves through the fat, which reduces the amount of blood lost during the procedure.
What are the Benefits of SmartLipo?
There are many reasons SmartLipo is increasing in popularity, including
Tightens skin: the SmartLipo laser causes the skin to retract and tighten, leading to smoother, firmer skin after the surgery, and sometimes even reducing cellulite.
Reduced scarring: the incision for SmartLipo is tiny – smaller than the incision for traditional liposuction and leaves a scar that is virtually undetectable.
Minimal blood loss: the SmartLipo laser seals red blood cells as it liquefies fat, reducing the amount of blood lost during the procedure significantly.
Less risky: Because of the reduced blood loss, and because very little anesthesia is required, SmartLipo is safer than traditional liposuction.
Less swelling and bruising: the SmartLipo laser can help the blood vessels near the skin’s surface coagulate, and the cannula is so small that it is minimally invasive; together, these factors reduce bruising and swelling.
Faster recovery time: patients can return to work and normal daily activities almost immediately after their SmartLipo procedure, and heal faster from SmartLipo than they would from a traditional liposuction.
Who is a Good Candidate for SmartLipo?
A good candidate for SmartLipo is someone who has pockets of fat, bulges or bumps that they can’t seem to get rid of, despite having tried to do so with exercise and dieting. The best candidates for SmartLipo will also be of average (or possibly slightly above average) weight, and in generally good health. These are standard requirements for any type of liposuction procedure: SmartLipo alone will not make you more physically fit, it only removes fat and sculpts the body. To keep your body looking great after surgery, you have to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Patients with some health conditions may still be good candidates for SmartLipo; if you’re unsure about whether you qualify, schedule a consultation with your doctor to find out where you stand.
What Can I Expect if I Choose SmartLipo?
Most patients only need one treatment for any given area of the body they choose to treat with SmartLipo; one session generally takes between 1-3 hours. The incision where the cannula is inserted is tiny (about 1 to 2 mm long) so it is barely visible, both directly following surgery and after it heals. Local anesthesia is used, so there is no pain during the procedure, only minor discomfort; and since SmartLipo is minimally invasive, there will be less pain even after the anesthesia wears off, and much less visible bruising and swelling than there would be with traditional liposuction.
Ideally, SmartLipo patients should rest for at least one or two days after surgery, although many patients find they are able to return to work and other normal activities almost immediately afterward. Your surgeon may require you to wear compression garments during your recovery, both to help preserve the smoothness of your skin and to keep blood clots from forming, but the length of time they have to be worn for is significantly less than in the case of traditional liposuction. Any swelling you experience should be gone by the end of the first week after your SmartLipo is performed, and most patients’ skin goes entirely back to normal by the end of three months.
If you have disproportional bulges of fat on your body you want to get rid of, or if you wish to learn more about SmartLipo, contact the San Francisco Plastic Surgery & Laser Center at 415-392-3333 to schedule a free consultation. Our address is 490 Post Street, Suite 430, in downtown San Francisco.
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