There are a number of liposuction techniques:
Several liters of a saline solution with a local anesthetic (lidocaine) and a vessel-constrictor (epinephrine) are pumped below the skin in the area that is to be suctioned.
The fat is suctioned (sucked out) through small suction tubes (microcannulas). This is the most popular form of liposuction.
No fluid is injected before the fat is removed. This method is seldom used today. There is a higher risk of bruising and bleeding.
Ultrasound-assisted liposuction (UAL)
Also known as ultrasonic liposuction, the cannula is energized with ultrasound. This makes the fat melt away on contact – the ultrasound vibrations burst the walls of the fat cells, emulsifying the fat (liquefying it) and making it easier to suction out. This method is a good choice for working on more fibrous areas, such as the male breast, back, and in areas where liposuction has been done before.
After ultrasonic liposuction, it is necessary to perform suction-assisted liposuction to remove the liquefied fat.
Power-assisted liposuction (PAS)
Also known as powered liposuction, PAS uses a specialized cannula with a mechanized system that rapidly moves back-and-forth, allowing the surgeon to pull out fat more easily.
Laser Assisted Lipolysis (LAL)
Also known as laser-guided lipo, this procedure requires the use of tumescent fluid. It is a far less invasive and bloody procedure than the traditional liposuction method for removing fat.
A microcannula is inserted through a small incision to deliver laser energy and heat into subcutaneous fat (fat under the skin).
After the operation, the surgeon may leave the incisions open so that excess fluid and blood can drain from the body.