Tumescent Liposuction vs Smartlipo

tumescent liposuction vs smartlipo

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For women who want to enhance their natural figures and overall appearance, liposuction is one of the most common types of plastic surgery in the industry due to how effectively it works in removing excess fat on different parts of the body. As technology and techniques become more advanced, there are different forms of liposuction available to help patients achieve the results they desire.

Tumescent liposuction and Smartlipo are incredibly common and are similar in the outcomes they deliver. There are still a few main differences that set them apart, making it necessary to compare both procedures to ensure you can make the right selection while working with a plastic surgeon at Boutinic Aesthetics.

Tumescent liposuction

Tumescent liposuction removes fat on the body and contours the features but doesn’t have as many risks as traditional liposuction. The procedure takes an average of three to four hours to perform, with general anesthesia often used.


Local anesthesia is used with Smartlipo, which melts fat with a laser and liquifies it, making it easy and efficient to remove with a small cannula. The process is known to be a lot more gentle than tumescent liposuction and doesn’t involve as much bruising.

Tumescent liposuction vs. Smartlipo


Tumescent liposuction and Smartlipo are extremely similar because they both involve using a cannula that is inserted into different areas of the body to remove pockets of fat.

Smartlipo uses laser-assisted technology (laser lipolysis) to break up the fat, whereas tumescent liposuction manually breaks up the fat deposits. The fat is removed via a slow suction method.

Treatment areas

Tumescent liposuction can be performed on various parts of the body, including the back, flanks, breasts, neck, chin, arms, face, and thighs, making it easy to accommodate more patients.

Smartlipo can be used to remove fat on the male breast, chin, neck, arms, back bra roll, female breast, inner thighs, outer thighs, buffalo hump, and abdomen.


Tumescent liposuction is minimal with how invasive it is, but it can lead to more bruising than Smartlipo. It doesn’t require a lot of downtime and has a faster recovery process compared to traditional liposuction.

Smartlipo is known to be minimally invasive and involves minor incisions that are made on the areas where fat is extracted. This results in less bruising and doesn’t involve as much bruising compared to traditional liposuction and tumescent liposuction.

Recovery Period

The recovery period for tumescent liposuction is an average of ten days, making it necessary to rest and limit your physical activity. It’s also necessary to attend all of your post-op appointments to ensure your plastic surgeon can monitor how well you’re healing. Bruising and swelling can last an average of four to six weeks.

Smartlipo offers a faster recovery period because it’s less invasive and requires a downtime of two to four days. Avoid exercising or any strenuous activity for seven to ten days.

The amount of fat that is removed with each procedure and the health of each patient will determine the timeframe of the recovery process.


Both tumescent liposuction and Smartlipo are similar in how effective they are for the average patient. There aren’t any studies showing that one of the procedures delivers better results than the other. With both procedures, an average of four to five liters of fat can be removed. The final results are ultimately determined by the level of experience and skill level of the plastic surgeon who is performing the procedure, making it necessary to rely on a medical professional who specializes in tumescent liposuction or Smartlipo and has several years of experience in the industry.

Patient Safety and Risks

Some of the main risks that are associated with tumescent liposuction include dimpling, lumpiness, skin irregularities, infections, numb areas of the treatment area, scarring, and loose skin. Fortunately, these side effects can be easy to correct with a revision that is made by the plastic surgeon. The procedure is considered to be relatively safe to undergo.

The risks associated with Smartlipo include tissue tenderness and bruising. Discomfort and tenderness are prone to healing and resolving several days following the procedure. Due to how gentle Smartlipo is, it’s considered to be slightly safer than tumescent liposuction and is significantly safer than traditional liposuction.


The average cost of tumescent liposuction is $2,000 to $11,000. Although this is a wide range, there are many factors that influence the overall price and what you can expect to pay. The number of treatment areas, the skill level and experience of the plastic surgeon, and the location of where the procedure is performed will determine the cost. Your plastic surgeon will provide you with the price following your consultation.

Smartlipo costs an average of $1,500 and $7,500 for each treatment area on the body. When it’s performed on the abdomen and stomach area, the cost is prone to be higher. Smaller areas like the chin can reduce the price. The flanks, knees, arms, and calves are an average of $3,000 to $3,500.

Which is the right for me?

There are multiple factors to weigh when choosing the best liposuction method and technique for your needs. It’s important to consider your budget, as well as how much time you can take off of work to rest and recover. The areas where you want to remove fat will also influence if one of the procedures is more ideal, making it necessary to be examined by a plastic surgeon who can discuss your goals and the results that you want to achieve.

Many surgeons consider tumescent Liposuction a superior technique and more effective than Smartlipo, but it’s a controversial topic. If you want to learn more about how the tumescent technique compares to other liposuction techniques, follow the link.

Schedule a Consultation with a Liposuction Expert

If you want to learn more about tumescent liposuction and Smartlipo, you can reach out to our team at Boutinic Aesthetics to have your questions answered. Our experts will help you schedule a consultation to ensure you can talk more with one of our leading board-certified plastic surgeons about your options.

Dr. Ernesto Torres

Dr. Ernesto Torres

Medically reviewed by
Dr. Ernesto Torres specializes in aesthetic plastic surgery in Miami, FL


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