The most commonly known treatment is liposuction, a surgical procedure with inherent risks that many patients wish to avoid. Now, less invasive energy-based alternatives are available, including energy-assisted liposuction, which is usually gentler in comparison to regular liposuction. Recently, completely non-invasive treatments are showing up in the market but results are less predictable and less impressive.
After you and your physician select the area(s) to be treated, the device is positioned on your body and controlled cooling is applied. A gel pad and applicator are applied to the targeted area. Vacuum applicators draw the tissue into the applicator cup. Applicators are secured to the treatment area. All applicators deliver controlled cooling to the targeted fat.
While some of these problems still occur (notably the need for transfusions), experts say it's on a much smaller scale in the last few years. In a study presented in 2003 at an American Society of Plastic Surgeons conference in San Diego, researchers found that many such complications could be avoided if patients allowed more time to elapse between weight loss surgery and plastic surgery.
The research reported that patients who underwent bariatric surgery (weight loss surgery on the stomach and/or intestines) who waited about a year before undergoing body-contouring surgery saw a reduction in the complication rate -- and ended up with shorter hospital stays. The researchers also reported that waiting allowed the death rate to drop dramatically, from 14% for those who had body-contouring surgery soon after losing the weight, to 0% for those who waited.
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