Battle Of The Bulge(s)

Body Contouring Offers New Techniques To Win The War On Fat

If you’re fighting the battle of the bulge(s) with your body, you’ll be happy to know that improved weapons in the fat fighting arsenal combine to give excellent results in body contouring, says Dr. John Mancoll of Mancoll Cosmetic and Plastic Surgery in Virginia Beach.

Mancoll deploys several techniques—an ultrasonic technology called Vaser and Smart-Lipo, which combines laser and liposuction. The benefits of all three will give you the body you’ve always dreamed of or allow you to fit back into your high school jeans.

“There’s no such thing as one technique vs. another anymore,” says Mancoll, a board certified plastic surgeon. “The ideal treatment uses each of those technologies for a specific purpose so I can optimize my patients’ outcomes.”

Traditional liposuction alone does a good job of vacuuming out fat, but it is more traumatic to the body’s tissues and thus, can cause more swelling and bruising, he says. Adding the surgical laser to liposuction via Smart-Lipo allows for a less traumatic procedure and a shorter recovery. Additionally the Smart-Lipo can tighten skin five times more than traditional liposuction alone. In contrast to the Smart-Lipo, the Vaser is more efficient at breaking up and loosening fat in the tough fibrous areas around the hips, lower back and chest (in men).  Combined, the three techniques give optimal results.

First, you’ll have a consultation to pinpoint the extra fat and potentially loose skin. Then based on the surgical plan created, Mancoll may first use the Vaser ultrasonic device to break up fibrous fat. Then the Smart-Lipo is used to tighten the skin in areas (neck, abdomen, inner things and arms) where loose skin is usually a problem. Finally traditional liposuction removes the unwanted fat.

These technologies are not new. But over the last 18 years the technology has greatly improved and is now more powerful, faster and safer than ever before. For example the first generation of Smart-Lipo was a clumpy three-watt laser in which you had to monitor skin continuously so not to cause a burn. Today’s device is a 20-watt machine, combining multiple laser wavelengths with an internal temperature probe that automatically shuts off the machine at a temperature well below what it takes to burn skin.

The procedure also is much quicker than when the original Smart Lipo came out. Procedures today can take as little as two hours. While traditional liposuction usually is done with general anesthesia, Smart-Lipo often can be comfortably performed with local numbing medicine and oral sedation. This helps to reduce costs and quickens recovery.

“Body contouring patients are through the moon after the surgery,” Mancoll says. “They can’t believe the change. People come in wearing clothes they never would have thought of wearing before. Even in cold weather, they come in wearing sleeveless tops and tight fitting clothes to show off their new bodies.”

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