If you’ve decided to venture into the world of liposuction (or research into liposuction), you’ve probably quickly realized that there’s not one single way the operation can be done. For someone who may be interested in getting the procedure, this can be both confusing and frustrating, trying to figure out which is the safest and most effective form of liposuction and which one you should choose.
From our perspective, sophisticated technology is certainly important and it makes our jobs a whole lot easier. But what’s even more important is technique and expertise. An experienced surgeon with years of successful liposuction procedures behind them, trained in the most innovative liposuction techniques, is going to be your best bet for an amazing result.
It’s also why we chose to distinguish between SAFELipo and VASER Lipo, in particular because the primary difference between the two is that one is a technique and the other is a technology. Let’s break it down.
What is the SAFELipo Technique?
SAFELipo is an innovative liposuction technique. SAFE actually stands for a three tier process during the liposuction procedure: separation, aspiration, and fat equalization. This three step process is really meant to address and respond to some of the common issues that often arise from a traditional liposuction procedure, and to prevent them where possible.
One of the most common side effects of standard liposuction procedures is a resulting uneven or lumpy distribution of fat. What SAFELipo does is follow the same steps your surgeon would take during a typical PAL (power-assisted liposuction) procedure, but adds the final step of fat equalization.
So during the first step of SAFELipo your surgeon will make a small incision in the skin through which they will insert a cannula with what’s known as an “exploding-tip.” The cannula uses vibration in order to gently separate the fat from nerves, blood vessels, and connective tissue. This then allows your surgeon to aspirate the fat – step two.
With SAFELipo your surgeon will use a smaller cannula than those used in traditional liposuction procedures to aspirate the fat, which minimizes bruising, bleeding and any potential damage to the various elements that your fat was previously connected to.
The third step of SAFELipo, fat equalization, is where your surgeon sculpts, molds, and evens out the remaining fat beneath the surface of the skin in order to prevent any post-surgical puckering, rippling, or overall uneven fat distribution and contour irregularities. This creates an amazing, natural-looking result.
What is VASER Liposuction technology?
VASER lipo, on the other hand, is a specific liposuction technology as opposed to a technique. It is an ultrasound-assisted liposuction which uses ultrasonic vibration in order to separate the fat from surrounding tissue. The use of ultrasound technology is meant to gently shake the fat cells apart from other tissue in order to cause less bruising, bleeding, and damage, and resulting in a quicker recovery time for the patient.
That said VASER lipo carries the same risks of uneven fat distribution and other irregularities, as with other liposuction technologies. It also generates heat, which can result in unwanted scar tissue formation.
This is not to say that it can’t yield excellent results in expert hands, but it’s why we like to put the emphasis on expertise and not only on the method used for a procedure like liposuction.
Why We Prefer Liposuction Technique Over Technology
At The Plastic Surgery clinic we prefer to use the SAFELipo technique combined with power-assisted technology, which doesn’t generate heat like with VASER lipo, minimizing the risk of unnecessary scarring.
SAFELipo was actually developed in order to address many of the unwanted side effects caused by various liposuction technologies including VASER lipo. Patients who may have experienced unwanted contour irregularities from a liposuction procedure would in most cases have it revised with the SAFELipo technique.
In fact, some surgeons may even follow-up a VASER lipo procedure with the SAFELipo technique in order to reduce the risk of any contour irregularities or other unwanted results such as seroma formation, which is when fluid collects under the surface of the skin typically in the empty space left by the fat that was removed when we’re talking about liposuction.
So basically when you’re thinking VASER lipo or SAFELipo, one is a specialized technology and the other is a specialized technique that can be applied to any technology. That means that even if the technology fails you in some way, because a patient reacts to it in one way or another, you’ve got the technique to account for any unwanted side effects.
Here’s the thing: most liposuction technologies these days are super sophisticated and super safe, and if you’re the right candidate will give you great results, but you can’t just count on the technology. The most important part of any surgical procedure is the surgeon who is manipulating the technology. If they know what they’re doing and have a ton of experience then you are as good as gold, and your result is magical.
Our best advice is that if you’re thinking of taking the plunge into any procedure be sure to find the most experienced hands and the surgeon and staff that are going to take care of you and see you through your entire journey. That’s what we’re all about. So if you have more questions about SAFELipo or VASER lipo don’t hesitate to come chat with us. Our consultations are always free and there’s nothing we love more than meeting new patients and sharing our knowledge and experience.