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SUMMARY: SAFELipo® is a relatively new development in liposuction that can safely remove large volumes of fat and shape smooth, natural looking contours.


SAFELipo® is a relatively new development in liposuction that can safely remove large volumes of fat and shape smooth, natural looking contours. Developed in the early 2000s by Dr. Simeon Wall Jr., SAFELipo was originally intended for patients who needed revisionary liposuction procedures. The precision, gentleness, and capacity for large-volume reduction with smooth results make it equally appealing to first-time liposuction patients.

A revisionary procedure is sometimes necessary when a patient has problems with the results of his or her first procedure. Though uncommon, conditions such as lumpiness and dermal adhesions, which create a rippled, unnatural appearance, can occur after liposuction. SAFELipo uses a 3-step process to avoid these risks and create a smooth, natural-looking outcome. SAFELipo also combines fat shifting and fat grafting into this comprehensive process to maximize results.

A surgeon performing SAFELipo uses the following 3 steps:

Separation: Using a special tool called a basket cannula or exploded tip probe, the surgeon performing the liposuction separates and loosens the fat to be removed. This first step allows for the precise and gentle removal of fat in the second step. When performed by an experienced plastic surgeon, the fat can be separated without damage to the blood vessels or other nearby structures.

Aspiration: The aspiration, or suction step, is what most liposuction procedures have in common. Because the previous step effectively separated and emulsified the fat, the surgeon is able to use a smaller cannula for aspiration, preferentially removing the separated fat and leaving undamaged the supporting structures. Because the surgeon is able to essentially liquefy the unwanted fat without using thermal energy, there is a lower incidence of suction avulsion injuries, skin damage, and other complications.

Fat Equalization: Once the targeted fat has been removed, the surgeon uses tools called fat equalization probes to even out and re-form the remaining thin layer of fat. This step is important because it creates a smooth final result.

The fat equalization step creates a healthy layer of local fat grafts that prevents the skin from coming into direct contact with the underlying fascia – an unfavorable result that’s responsible for dermal adhesions and contour deformities.

Since the invention of SAFELipo in the early 2000s, many plastic surgeons from the United States and abroad have been trained in the SAFELipo process. To find a doctor in your area who offers SAFELipo and other body contouring procedures, check out the doctor locator on the SAFELipo website.

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