Potential Risks and Complications of Lipotherme

Lipotherme is laser-assisted liposuction. It is used as a cosmetic procedure to remove fat cells from body areas that are difficult to reach with diet and exercise. It is commonly used in conjunction with traditional liposuction. The technique uses very low doses of laser heat to liquefy fat cells and remove them from the body.

Even though Lipotherme can be done as an outpatient procedure, it is still considered a surgical procedure. Patients will be happier with their results if they completely research the procedure before they have it done. Making sure the physician chosen is board certified by The American Board of Plastic Surgery is the first step. Next, a complete medical evaluation should be done with your surgeon to discuss risks, benefits, alternatives and reasoning for the surgery. Approximately forty percent of cosmetic surgery patients wish they had done more research prior to their surgeries.

Laser Burn Complications

Lipotherme treatments have similar risks and complications as other cosmetic surgeries. Even though the procedure is considered minimally invasive, it has many potential risks and complications.

Because Lipotherme uses a small laser that works in small bursts, it has the potential to cause burns to the skin and interior organs. The cannula that supports the laser is placed under the skin to liquefy the fat cells, which can cause burns to the skin an other anatomical regions if it is used improperly. Burns to the skin can cause a loss of skin by killing the tissue and causing possible open wounds. Open wounds have the prospective to become infected and scar. Organ damage from burns caused by the laser has the highest probability when Lipotherme is used in the abdomen, back and buttock regions.

Nerve Damage Complications

When the Lipotherme cannula is placed under the skin for liquefication of fat cells, it is moved back and forth across the surgical area by the surgeon. Depending on the strength of the movement and the location of the cannula, nerve damage can occur. Nerves are present throughout the body and when the fat cells are being liquefied, some of the underlying nerves can be damaged. Results can be temporary or even cause permanent numbness to the treated area.

Anesthetic Risk

Prior to placement of the cannula under the skin, the surgical area has to be anesthetized with a local injected anesthetic. As with all drugs and anesthetics, there is the potential for an allergic reaction to the chemical by the patient. It can be as mild as swelling and itching or as dramatic as anaphylactic shock and death. Since Lipotherme uses a local anesthetic, the risk of a reaction is minimal, but still present.

Risk of Infection

Incisions are made in the skin for placement of the Lipotherme cannula. The incisions are very small, but there is still a risk of infection at the incision site. The infection could be a simple skin infection or a more complicated internal infection within the cavity created by the liquefied fat removal. Scars will be present from the initial incisions, but if they become infected a larger, more pronounced scar can occur.

Risk of Body Deformation

Lastly, after spending time and money on the procedure and recovering from post-operative pain and bruising, a patient could potentially receive Lipotherme results that are asymmetric. Asymmetrical results can be in the form of dimples, wavy lines or lumps caused by improper liposuction that gives an unbalanced appearance to a patient's body. Such results can be devastating to a patient who is trying to improve her body condition.

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