SmartLipo is a new procedure that was developed to aid in fat removal and body contouring. It is a popular medical procedure because of the many benefits it offers. Unlike a lot of the other liposuction procedures that are out there, SmartLipo is a quick procedure.
The entire process takes about an hour and there is no need for general anesthesia. In fact, the patient is kept conscious throughout the procedure and only a local anesthetic is used. Other than that, SmartLipo also serves as a fat removal and body contouring solution for patients who might not be eligible for other liposuction procedures due to the presence of pre-existing conditions or an intolerance for general anesthesia.
Additionally, SmartLipo is also relatively less painful compared to other procedures that help with fat removal or body contouring. The procedure is carried out using an instrument that is much slimmer than a straw. So, the incisions that are made to accommodate this instrument are very small and do not even require sutures to close them up.
Once the fat is meted using the laser, it is processed in the liver and excreted naturally. It is a bloodless process and can help eliminate about 8 pounds of fat. Recovery is also quite quick.
Another advantage is that it allows doctors to include other chemical treatments (dermal fillers and chemical surfacing agents) that help with rejuvenating the body entirely. On the whole, it is a very safe procedure to get rid of excess fat or reshape the body. It offers the best results when applied to areas such as the knees, neck, ankles, and the thigh and hips, which are actually the most commonly treated areas. The results from SmartLipo are very satisfactory and the procedure works for any body type. This is exactly why it remains a favored option with regard to fat removal and body contouring.
In fact, SmartLipo is also well-recognized for the fact that it eliminates even the most stubborn fat deposits and re-establishes elasticity, which creates a younger look for those have undergone the treatment.
Eliminate stretch marks, bruising, & cellulite
SmartLipo has also been found to be very effective in getting rid of stretch marks, bruising, and cellulite.
Cellulite is a condition that is characterized by the loosening of the connective tissues under the skin. This causes the connective tissue to sort of hang, which results in the pulling of the skin. The pulling of the skin is what leads to the formation of dimples, which is the most visible symptom of cellulite. Contrary to the existing myth, cellulite has very little to do with fat deposits.
Cellulite is just as prevalent in thin women as it is in fat women. SmartLipo helps with getting rid of the problem by breaking up the loose connective tissue. When this happens, it stimulates the production of fresh collagen, which is what provides human skin with its elasticity and smoothness. In the end, the patient’s skin is tightened and the cellulite is cleared.
Bruising can also be fixed with SmartLipo. As we already know, the laser from the instrument helps with stimulating the production of collagen, which tightens the skin. But, it doesn’t end there. The production of collagen also causes the blood vessels to coagulate, which stops the bleeding.
Since bruising is caused as a result of bleeding, it is obvious that to stop the bruising you must stop the bleeding, which is exactly what SmartLipo does. Additionally, since SmartLipo reduces bruising, it doesn’t cause the level of discomfort one would expect from this sort of a procedure. Though there may be some soreness after the procedure as a result of the blood accumulating under the skin, there really is no actual bruising after SmartLipo. This, in turn, speeds up the healing process.
Stretch marks are another problem that can be solved with SmartLipo. Now, we know that SmartLipo tightens the skin. Apart from fixing cellulite or reducing bruising, this tightening of the skin also aids in eliminating stretch marks.
Stretch marks occur when the skin is stretched beyond a certain point. This is a common problem with overweight people and also pregnant women. Apart from eliminating the fat, SmartLipo can be used to tighten the skin. This causes the stretched skin to get pulled. The pulling effect then causes the length and the width of the stretch marks to reduce. The end result is that the stretch marks become less visible.
As we have already discussed, SmartLipo depends on the use of a laser to literally melt the fat. This makes the procedure a very safe option as there is minimal invasion involved and there are almost no side effects. The first SmartLipo or laser-assisted procedure was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in 2006.
The procedure mainly involves targeting localized, small deposits of fat on the patient’s body or face. The most treated areas are the neck, arms, back, breasts (gynecomastia), and jowls etc. Loose skin is another problem that is treated with SmartLipo.
However, like all other procedures, SmartLipo isn’t suitable for all. There are a few conditions that need to be met in order for patients to qualify. The ideal SmartLipo candidate is someone who possesses good health, in general. Other than that, he/she mustn’t be morbidly obese. SmartLipo works best for people who are moderately overweight. This mainly refers to people who have isolated pockets of stubborn fat that do not seem to disappear even with exercise and diet.
The first step in the procedure is actually the consultation. This is when the doctor or surgeon discusses various aspects of the surgery and also goes through the patient’s medical history. This is done to ensure that the patient is eligible for the procedure. Other than that, the surgeon/doctor will also observe the areas that are supposed to undergo SmartLipo treatment.
Right before beginning the procedure, the doctor will apply a local anesthetic over the areas that require treatment. After that, he/she will make incisions on the treatable areas. These incisions can range from about 1mm to 2mm in length. Then, a cannula is inserted through these incisions. Sometimes, a slim tube might be used instead of a cannula. The laser fiber runs through the cannula or tube and is positioned right under the skin.
The laser fiber is guided through the fatty areas using a fanning motion. A red light/indicator present on the laser fiber, which can be seen through the skin, helps the doctor/surgeon know whether the fiber is moving as intended.
Once the right position is attained, the laser is emitted through the fiber cable. The laser produces a lot of heat, which is what helps the fat melt away. This happens as soon as the laser hits the fat cells. When this occurs, the cell membranes in the fat start to swell up. It can be compared with a bubbling liquid where the bubbles simply burst away.
Here, the fat bubbles burst away to form fatty oils. If the treatable area is small, the fatty oils simply get absorbed by the body. However, for larger areas, the doctor/surgeon will have to use a suction device to get rid of all the excess fatty oils.
As we discussed earlier, the laser doesn’t just stop with liquifying the fat. It also stimulates the production of collagen. Collagen is basically a protein that gives skin its elasticity and firmness, creating a healthy appearance. The fresh collagen that is produced as a result of SmartLipo ends up tightening the skin and recreates that healthy appearance. This is one of the main factors involved in making SmartLipo the most preferred method of fat reduction.
SmartLipo hardly takes an hour to complete and is often referred to as “lunch-hour lipo” because of the speed at which can be carried out. Though the actual duration of the procedure might vary according to the size of the treatable areas, it has been observed that, on an average, SmartLipo does not take longer than 60 minutes.
Of course, lunch-hour lipo is only used in a casual context. It does not mean that you can literally get back to a normal routine immediately. Patients will definitely require a 48-hour period of rest after the procedure.
What to expect post-procedure
Recovering from SmartLipo doesn’t take a lot of time and is quite easy when compared with other liposuction procedures. For starters, there are no stitches that require healing. There might be some amount of soreness, but, studies so far indicate that there are no side effects to SmartLipo.
Also, as we established earlier, there is minimal bruising, which hastens the healing process.
Patients can get back to their usual routine within a day or two. However, vigorous activity should be avoided for at least two weeks. Compression garments will have to be applied for a week or so to improve healing.
Results become noticeable in a week, but, the final change becomes noticeable after 6 months. In order to achieve a perfect look, a repeat session might be required. However, this is rare.