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Laser Lipolysis With GPS: LipoControl


Body contouring with GPS may mean more targeted fat removal and potentially lesser burns for patients.

body contouring options
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The days of traditional liposuction being the only option to contour the body are long gone. These days, the market is flooded with new technologies that can remove fat with less downtime and in some cases, offer skin tightening as a part of the deal. A relatively new contender in the laser lipo field, LipoControl has built-in GPS to efficiently monitor energy delivery and mitigate potential burns.

Recently seen on The Doctors, one of the newest laser lipolysis devices to hit the market is LipoControl from Osyris Medical. LipoControl offers physicians more control over the heat and location of the laser via a GPS system that is built into the cannula while showing real-time tracking of it's movements.

Like other laser lipolysis devices, fat is broken up before removal and the laser technology helps to tighten skin after the procedure. What differentiates LipoControl is it's ability to show the physician precisely where the laser is within treatment area and how much energy is being delivered. Dr. Drew Ordon says this is beneficial because, "That's always been a big problem with liposuction: under-treatment and over-treatment."

LipoControl, which received FDA clearance earlier this year in February 2011, builds on Osyris' original LipoTherme design by adding the "GPS" feature, or the energy monitoring device to ensure uniform delivery throughout the procedure. Dr. Neil Sadick of Sadick Dermatology, who was involved with the testing of the LipoControl system says he's seen positive results with the new device. As Dr. Sadick describes, "LipoControl has a computer tracking system that allows you determine in real live time exactly how much energy is being delivered to a given area in the body. It is almost like seeing inside the body where the liposuction or laser fiber is, allowing the physician to deliver a uniform amount of energy."

Upon reaching the ideal energy output, the LipoControl screen turns green to indicate to the physician that he need not go any higher. Dr. Sadick explains this extra safety will reduce the number of burns sometimes reported with other devices.

In the arena of laser lipolysis, many physicians still consider the gold standard to be Smartlipo by Cynosure. FDA approved, the latest version is the Smartlipo Triplex which utilizes 3 laser wavelengths to effectively melt fat and tighten skin. Similar to LipoControl and other laser lipolysis devices, the laser does double duty: it ruptures the fat cell membranes which is then aspirated out of the body while cauterizing blood vessels so there is less bleeding, bruising and swelling. According to Newport Beach Smartlipo provider Dr. Thomas Barnes, "You get what I call the thermal wound conversion due to the laser. It changes the cascade of the healing and you get people back to work in a few days instead of a week or two."

neck lift before and after
Actual Smartlipo Results by Dr. Thomas Barnes (Lunchtime Necklift)

Suitable for contouring all over the body, Smartlipo can remove fat from the abdomen, love handles, backs, thighs, hips, knees, and arms. However, due to the sensitive nature of the laser, Smartlipo also makes it easier to treat smaller and more delicate areas such as the neck and chin and may provide results similar to a neck lift. "Using Smartlipo laser liposuction, I can remove a little fat while heating the surrounding tissue so it shrinks down," says Dr. Barnes. He says that patients heal quickly and most are able to return to work the next day. "In just a few days, patients can return to their normal activities, looking 10 years younger."

It is important to discuss your body contouring needs with your physician and as always, it is ideal to find a physician who has multiple devices so they can recommend the best procedure for you.