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Laser and vaser liposuction: what’s the difference?

Laser and vaser liposuction: what’s the difference?
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The difference between vaser, laser, and regular tumescent liposuction is all in the tools used. All liposuction uses tumescent liposuction as its base, with Vaser liposuction using ultrasonic energy, and a laser using a thermal laser beam, to assist the practitioner in the procedure.

Tumescent liposuction is the gold standard in liposuction techniques, regarded globally as the technique that gets the best results time and time again.

Dr Michael Rich, the liposuction expert at ENRICH, uses tumescent liposuction, with outstanding results. It is Dr Rich’s opinion that tumescent liposuction alone is the safest and provides the best results, with the lowest levels of risk associated with the procedure. While Vaser may be the new buzz word, it is not the gold standard in liposuction techniques.

“Using laser to tighten skin after liposuction can be done, but I don’t believe it’s optimal for both to be done in the same procedure,” says Dr Rich regarding laser-assisted liposuction. Dr Rich was trained by tumescent liposuction pioneer Dr Jeffrey Klein in the United States, the doctor who founded the tumescent liposuction technique.

Why is tumescent liposuction ideal for optimal results?

The use of tumescent fluid means tiny incisions, smoother results, reduced likelihood of bruising, and faster recovery times. Vaser liposuction requires larger incisions, which means more likelihood of visible scarring and tissue damage.

Vaser or laser liposuction changes the state of fatty tissue prior to suction, while tumescent liposuction removes fat from your body intact. Fat cells are targeted with modern liposuction techniques, leaving blood vessels, nerves, and other connective tissue largely unharmed. This reduces recovery time compared to older techniques.

We do not perform Vaser or laser liposuction at ENRICH – we perform the gold standard tumescent technique, with over 25 years’ experience. Dr Rich has performed over 2,000 liposuction procedures.

Tumescent liposuction excels at treating all areas of the body

  • Abdomen
  • Flanks (sides)
  • ‘Muffin top’
  • Post-baby belly fat
  • Chin/neck
  • Back
  • Hips
  • Waist
  • Thighs
  • Arms
  • Calves
  • Ankles
  • Knees
  • Double chin
  • Around the bra line
  • Breasts (breast reduction)
  • Male chest/breast tissue (gynaecomastia)

liposuction treatments in melbourne

Understanding vaser-assisted liposuction

Vaser liposuction is performed using a special probe that emits ultrasonic waves from both the end and the sides uniformly. The probe is inserted just under the skin into the treatment area and moved gently around to treat the fat cells.

The ultrasonic waves (vibrations) and heat combines the fat cells with a special saline solution that is injected into the area prior to treatment. This emulsifies the fat, which means the fat and the fluid become a liquid mixture, which is then suctioned out of the treatment area.

Fat cells removed during vaser liposuction can be used on other areas of the body (breasts, buttocks) using a fat transfer or fat grafting technique. This is also possible with regular liposuction techniques.

Vaser liposuction and tumescent liposuction are both very good for treating fat in fibrous areas of the body, such as the upper abdomen and back, and excellent for removing large volumes of fat and deeper fat. Vaser tends to be more expensive than laser-assisted or regular liposuction. Vaser liposuction may be performed under general or local anaesthetic.

vaser liposuction

Vaser liposuction is used for liposuction of the:

  • Abdomen
  • Chin
  • Neck
  • Back
  • Around the bra line
  • Hips
  • Waist
  • Thighs
  • Breasts
  • Male chest/breast tissue (gynecomastia)

Understanding laser-assisted liposuction

Laser liposuction uses a thermal laser beam to destroy fat cells, and unlike vaser, bursts the cells, emptying the contents – ‘liquefying’ fat. This liquid contents is suctioned away at the same time as the laser is applied. With laser-assisted liposuction, the laser beam is only emitted from the end of the probe, not the sides.

Blood vessels inside the treatment area are cauterised by the laser beam, which reduces bleeding. The special tumescent fluid injected into the treatment area also contains lidocaine, which not only numbs the area fully, but acts to seal off blood vessels. This means very limited bruising and bleeding, resulting in quick recovery times.

Laser liposuction can result in some skin tightening at the same time as liposuction, with the heat tightening the collagen fibres how ever in Dr Rich’s opinion laser & lipsuctio combined can result in more risk for the patient.

There is a greater risk of burns using laser liposuction compared with vaser liposuction, however in the wrong hands, the vaser probe has a history of burns too. Laser techniques are not quite as useful when treating fibrous areas of the body, but are useful for smaller areas. Laser liposuction may be performed under general or local anaesthetic.

Laser liposuction is used for liposuction of the:

  • Abdomen
  • Flanks (sides)
  • Chin
  • Neck
  • Back
  • Hips
  • Waist
  • Thighs

Key points of vaser, laser and tumescent liposuction

  • Both vaser and laser liposuction use heat
  • Vaser uses ultrasonic vibrations and heat to mix fat with the saline solution for easy removal
  • Vaser and tumescent liposuction are suitable for keeping fat cells intact for subsequent fat transfers
  • Vaser and laser both use regular tumescent liposuction techniques, with the addition of specialised probes
  • Tumescent liposuction is considered a very safe and effective body-shaping tool
  • Tumescent, vaser and laser lipo can all be performed under local or general anaesthetic
  • Tumescent liposuction is minimally invasive
  • Using an experienced tumescent liposuction expert is the best way to get excellent results for any liposuction treatment
  • Tumescent, vaser and laser liposuction all have their pros and cons
  • Always do your research. Liposuction is a surgical procedure and its essential for anyone embarking on any procedure to be informed.

What is the difference between vaser lipo and tumescent liposuction?

Tumescent liposuction is the gold standard of liposuction techniques, while laser and vaser are trendy procedures that all use tumescent liposuction as their base. Tumescent liposuction uses a special fluid injected into the treatment area, which numbs it and stops excess bleeding. The fluid makes the treatment area firm for easier fat removal, and the liposuction practitioner then uses a tiny tube to carefully and precisely suction fat out.

The processes are very similar between vaser, laser, and tumescent liposuction overall, but Vaser and laser may come with extra risks. The extra probe with the energy beam (ultrasound or laser beam) is useful in some circumstances but has little to do with a successful outcome. An experienced, expert liposuction practitioner is always your best bet for excellent results.

Read more on the science behind tumescent liposuction.

What’s the difference between Smartlipo and liposuction?

As above, Smartlipo (laser-assisted liposuction) and tumescent liposuction are different only in that with Smartlipo; a laser is used to break up the fat before it is suctioned out.

Looking for long-lasting fat removal?
Contact ENRICH for expert liposuction and fat removal treatments

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