Introduction: Laser liposuction versus VASER liposuction
The intrinsic difference between Laser Liposuction and VASER liposuction is the energy source used. Traditional liposuction uses hollow-bore cannulas to retrieve fat cells from the soft tissues. Removal of fat cells is directed by mechanical force generated by penetration of the concerned areas during your surgery. Laser liposuction supplements this action with the administration of a laser beam which pierces and melts the fat cells. The supplement of laser energy has been advocated to minimize discomfort thus allowing for your liposuction surgery to be performed without general anesthesia and to provide some degree of collagen tissue heating and subsequent skin and soft tissue tightening. The disadvantage of laser liposuction results from its inability to provide viable fat cells that can be used for fat transfer interests such as a Brazilian Butt Lift. In contrast, VASER liposuction utilizes ultrasound energy to tease fat cells off of vital structures such as nerves and vessels as well as connective tissue thus maximizing fat volume removal. The added volume removal allows for more dramatic contouring capacity appreciated by the ability to perform high-definition liposuction. Additionally, fat cells harvested are viable and thus amenable to performing a Brazilian Butt Lift fat transfer surgery.
What is Laser Liposuction?
Laser liposuction uses laser energy to help break apart and melt fat prior to removal. A small laser fiber is inserted through the same incisions as the liposuction cannula. The laser beam liquefies the fat, allowing it to be suctioned out more easily.
Some branded laser lipo devices include Airsculpt, SmartLipo, CoolLipo, LaserLipo and ProLipo. The lasers used are either pulsed Nd: YAG, diode, or Er: YAG lasers specifically made for cosmetic surgery use.
Benefits of Laser Liposuction
Some benefits of laser liposuction include:
- More precise fat removal
- Minimized risk of surface irregularities
- Promotes tightening of the skin
- May enhance skin smoothness
- Fast recovery time
- Low downtime after the procedure
- Reduced bruising and swelling
By using laser energy to help break up and tighten fat prior to suction, results may be further improved.
Downsides of Laser Liposuction
Possible disadvantages of laser liposuction include:
- Results highly depend on the surgeon’s skill
- Not suitable for larger volume fat removal
- Increased risk of burns if not performed properly
- Higher cost compared to traditional liposuction
- Inability to use the harvested fat for fat transfers such as BBLs
- May still require sedation or anesthesia
Overall, laser lipo enhances precision, but requires an expert hand to reduce risks like burns. It is better for smaller areas and patients desiring to avoid general anesthesia.
What is VASER Liposuction?
VASER stands for Vibration Amplification of Sound Energy at Resonance. This form of liposuction uses ultrasound energy to break up fat tissue before it is suctioned out.
The VASER device emits high-frequency sound waves via a small probe. The focused ultrasound energy creates air bubbles that tease apart fat cells from each other and the soft tissues. The action of teasing fat cells from other structures preserves fat cell membrane thus maximizing fat cell viability. This emulsified fat is then removed through gentle suction.
Benefits of VASER Liposuction
Benefits often associated with VASER lipo include:
- Effective for large-volume fat removal
- Less bruising compared to traditional liposuction
- Reduced risk of tissue damage
- Excellent for detailed body sculpting
- An excellent option for revision cases where soft tissue scarring is prominent
- Ability to use the fat for fat transfer in cases such as BBL or Natural Breast Augmentation
- Can treat fibrous areas like male breasts
- Typically performed under general anesthesia in most cases
The ability to remove more fat with less collateral damage makes VASER a popular body contouring option.
Downsides of VASER Liposuction
Some potential VASER lipo disadvantages include:
- Lengthier procedure time
- Higher cost than traditional liposuction
- Swelling may persist longer during recovery
The extra time required and equipment costs also make VASER more expensive than regular suction lipectomy.
Key Differences of Laser Lipo and VASER Lipo
While laser and VASER liposuction are both forms of energy-assisted liposuction, there are key differences:
|Laser energy melts fat
|Ultrasound energy emulsifies fat
|Best for small areas
|Effective for large volumes
|Tissue tightening effect
|Improved skin retraction
|Local or general anesthesia
|Usually general anesthesia
|1-2 hour procedure
|2-3 hour procedure
|Slightly longer recovery
|Cost per area: $1500-$2500
|Cost per area: $2500-$4000
Which Is Better – Laser or VASER Liposuction?
There is no definitive answer to whether laser liposuction or VASER liposuction delivers better results. The right choice depends on factors like:
- Areas being treated
- Amount of fat to be removed
- Laxity of the skin
- Whether high-definition results are desired
- Recovery time expectations
- Tolerance for swelling/bruising
- Cost considerations
Finding a Qualified Surgeon
The skill of the surgeon is even more important when it comes to these advanced liposuction techniques. Be sure to select a board-certified plastic surgeon who:
- Has specialized training in laser and/or VASER liposuction
- Operates in an accredited surgical facility
- Has certification from the American Board of Plastic Surgery
- Is a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) or American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery
- Routinely achieves excellent liposuction results
Do not compromise on choosing a properly qualified cosmetic or plastic surgeon to perform your procedure.
Conclusion: Laser liposuction versus VASER liposuction
Both laser and VASER liposuction offer key advantages over traditional liposuction. Laser’s ability to melt fat allows for ease of fat removal with minimal downtime and avoidance of general anesthesia. VASER emulsifies larger volumes of fat, more controlled fat removal, and improved skin retraction. The best choice depends on the areas being treated, the amount of fat removal desired, cost factors, and physician recommendation. Selecting a highly skilled, experienced surgeon is crucial for safe and optimal outcomes.
 American Society of Plastic Surgeons. Plastic Surgery Statistics Report. 2020. Accessed November 19, 2023. https://www.plasticsurgery.org/documents/News/Statistics/2020/plastic-surgery-statistics-full-report-2020.pdf