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What Is Power-assisted Liposuction?

Posted Dec 6, 2013 by Stephen Greenberg, MD

Manhattan Power-assisted LiposuctionImagine being able to finally shed unwanted fat from your abdomen, thighs, or virtually any area of your body. With liposuction, our Manhattan and Long Island patients have achieved superior contours that complement their bodies.

Liposuction has only grown in popularity over the years, providing stunning and potentially long-lasting results. With this surge in popularity have come numerous surgical techniques, each with their own benefits for the right candidate. One such technique is power-assisted liposuction (PAL), which can enhance both the procedure itself and its recovery period. 

How Power-assisted Liposuction Works

Liposuction is the process of removing excess fat through a thin tube, called a cannula. In a traditional procedure, an incision is made for the cannula to be inserted, and fat is simultaneously broken up and removed through it. This basic technique is still widely used, producing satisfying results with minimal risks.

In power-assisted liposuction, the tip of the cannula also vibrates rapidly. As it comes in contact with fatty tissue, the tissue is more easily broken apart, making for a gentler, more efficient surgery. Consequently, PAL treatment can aid a plastic surgeon in the procedure, ultimately improving one’s aesthetic results and healing.   

What to Expect From the Procedure

First, consult your cosmetic doctor on the best method of liposuction for you. Whether you opt for a traditional procedure, ultrasound-assisted liposuction, SmartLipo, or power-assisted liposuction, your decision should be informed based on a medical assessment of your body and its potential results. If you are a good candidate for PAL, here’s what you can expect from surgery:

  • A tumescent solution, containing local anesthesia and epinephrine, will be injected into the area. This will prevent discomfort during surgery while expanding the subcutaneous tissues, making fat more accessible for removal.
  • An incision will be made at the surgical area, through which the cannula can be inserted.
  • The cannula will come in contact with unwanted fat, loosening it from adjacent tissue and removing it. Due to the power of its vibration, the cannula does not have to be moved as frequently or forcefully to break apart fat cells.
  • Once a sufficient amount of fat has been removed, the remaining tissue will be contoured for a natural, smooth appearance. The cannula will be subsequently removed and the incision sutured. 

After surgery, which should last approximately one to three hours, you will be free to come home and relax. Even though you will have been administered local anesthesia, which carries few side effects, you should arrange to be driven home. In three to four days, most patients can resume their normal work related activities.

Benefits of PAL

PAL can provide advantages from the beginning of treatment through the end of recovery. Here are common benefits that our patients experience from this procedure:

  • Easier procedure: Fat is more effectively separated and removed, resulting in a faster and easier procedure.
  • Enhanced results: The body can be more precisely sculpted, especially in fibrous or thick areas that prove traditionally difficult.
  • Reduced trauma: As the cannula is used to break up fat, it can cause minor trauma to nearby tissue, exacerbating bruising and swelling during recovery. With PAL, these side effects can be reduced, making for quicker and more comfortable post-surgical healing. 
  • Reduced blood loss: Through the use of tumescent injection, blood loss is dramatically minimized during surgery and afterward. Likewise, fluids do not need to be replaced intravenously during treatment. 

Are You a Candidate for Liposuction?

If you are in good overall health and looking to lose any excess pockets of fat, you may be a good candidate for one of our liposuction procedures. To learn which treatment is most appropriate for you, contact our office and schedule an appointment with Dr. Greenberg.

Read more about: Liposuction Plastic Surgery
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