Considering VASER liposuction? Here’s what you need to know
What is VASER liposuction?
Liposuction is a procedure that removes unwanted fat cells from your body. It is usually carried out on areas of the body where stubborn fat deposits collect, such as your hips, thighs, tummy and the underside of the arms.
VASER stands for ‘Vibration Amplification of Sound Energy at Resonance’. It is a liposuction technique that uses ultrasound waves to break up and liquefy fat cells, making them easier to extract. The liquefied fat can then be drawn out through a needle, resulting in less damage to nearby tissues compared to traditional liposuction.
Who can have VASER liposuction?
Anyone can have VASER liposuction for cosmetic purposes. It is particularly useful if you are aiming to tone and sculpt your body by removing areas of fat that are difficult to remove with diet and exercise alone1. It cannot be used as a treatment for obesity, however.
Which areas of my body can be treated?
VASER liposuction can be used almost anywhere that fat is located. Common areas for treatment include:
- Neck and chin
- The underside of the arms
- Buttocks and hips
- Knees and ankles
What are the advantages of VASER liposuction?
VASER liposuction is a minimally-invasive procedure, as it requires only minor incisions to be made and leaves minimal scarring without the need for stitches. As a result, VASER liposuction is less traumatic than traditional liposuction, and it causes less bleeding and bruising. Other advantages include:
- Faster recovery times – you may be able to return to work in as little as 2-3 days, depending on the extent of your treatment
- Selective fat targeting – the ultrasound waves only break down fat cells, meaning nearby structures such as blood vessels and nerves are less likely to be damaged
- Cellulite removal – unlike traditional liposuction, VASER can remove areas of cellulite
Is VASER liposuction safe?
Liposuction is a commonly performed cosmetic procedure and the VASER technique has been in use for over 15 years. VASER liposuction has been proven to be safe and it causes minimal side effects. It has also been shown to cause less blood loss than traditional liposuction, especially when larger areas are being treated.
What should I expect?
On the day, your surgeon will discuss the procedure with you and will usually mark the areas of your body that are being treated. You may also be seen by an anaesthetist, who will discuss the type of anaesthetic that you will need. If the area being treated is small, then a local anaesthetic with mild sedation can be used during the procedure. If larger parts of the body are being treated, a general anaesthetic may be advised.
The procedure first involves injecting a solution called tumescent saline into the area being treated. This helps to numb the sensation and break down fat cells, as well as reduce bleeding. A small probe is then inserted through an incision. It emits ultrasound waves to break down and liquefy fat cells. The liquefied fat is then gently sucked out through a small needle.
The length of your VASER liposuction can vary from one to several hours depending on the extent of your treatment. After the procedure, you will be taken to a recovery area to allow the effects of the sedation or anaesthetic to wear off.
How long is the recovery period?
You should be able to go home on the same day as your VASER liposuction. Since the procedure is minimally invasive, it can take as little as 2-3 days before you feel back to normal again. The recovery time will vary depending on the areas that have been treated and how much fat has been removed. Your surgeon will help to give you an idea of what to expect.
For the first few days, you may notice a pink-orange fluid leaking from the wound sites, but this is perfectly normal and should resolve on its own. Pain following VASER liposuction is usually minimal, and it is unlikely that you will need strong painkillers. Some swelling will usually remain around the area for 5-6 weeks and there may also be some bruising or numbness during this time. It is best to avoid heavy lifting for 2-3 weeks following the procedure to allow your body to heal fully.
You will need to wear a special compression garment to help reshape your body for about 6-8 weeks after your VASER liposuction, and your surgeon will be able to provide more information about this.
Will I see immediate results?
Many people notice an immediate change following their VASER liposuction, although it may initially be masked by swelling. The results can be seen fully after 2-3 months when the inflammation has subsided, and by 6 months your skin will have fully tightened over the area.
You can still put the weight back on, so for the results to be permanent you should try to maintain a healthy lifestyle with a balanced diet and exercise.
VASER liposuction is a newer type of treatment that is particularly effective at removing stubborn areas of fat that do not easily shift with lifestyle changes. It is less traumatic than traditional liposuction and has a number of advantages, including faster recovery time and less scarring. The results can be seen very soon after the procedure, but you should maintain a healthy lifestyle to make sure they remain. If you are considering VASER liposuction or any other cosmetic procedure, speak to one of our specialists here at Highgate Private Hospital. They will be able to give you further information about the available options and create a plan that is best suited to your needs.