Ultrasound-assisted liposuction (UAL)

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Updated: 4/11/2007 2:46 pm
For traditional liposuction, unwanted fat is removed using a blunt tube with one or more holes at the end. Using a high vacuum, fat is drawn into the tube. The motion of the tube causes your fat to be removed. Traditional liposuction depends on your body releasing the unwanted fat. If you body refuses to 'let go,' the fat is bruised as it is pulled from the tube. Liposuction can enhance your appearance and your self-confidence, but it won't necessarily change your looks to match your ideal, or cause other people to treat you differently. Before you decide to undergo liposuction, think carefully about your expectations and discuss them with your surgeon. Ultrasound-assisted lipoplasty, commonly known as 'UAL,' is a relatively new liposuction technique. It uses sound waves to 'liquify' unwanted fat. UAL is especially effective for removing fat from fibrous body areas, such as the breasts, abdomen, or the back. It is also effective for removing larger volumes of fat in a single procedure. The best candidates for liposuction are normal-weight people with firm, elastic skin who have pockets of excess fat in particular areas. UAL candidates should be physically healthy, psychologically stable and realistic in their expectations. Age is usually not a criterion for liposuction, but older patients may have diminished skin elasticity and may not achieve the same results as a younger patient. Liposuction is usually performed as an outpatient. You can usually return to work within seven to ten days, but your final results may not be clear for up to a year.

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