Laser lipolysis carries hidden dangers, says clinical negligence specialist

Posted: 17/03/2014


Laser lipolysis (lipo) is a cosmetic procedure to remove body fat. It was first approved for use in 2006 and since then there have been a number of developments in the different types available. The laser lipo suction technique uses lasers to break up fat before its removal from the body, reducing the need for harsh suction. It has become a commonly adopted and accepted modality for removal of unwanted fatty tissue and is claimed to be as effective as traditional liposuction without a hospital stay.

Laser lipo is marketed on the basis that it is a quick and effective way of getting rid of the unwanted flab. It is meant to be a less invasive procedure and the effects are permanent since the fat cells are inactivated by the laser beam, leaving them incapable of storing fat any more. One commonly promoted advantage of laser lipo is fast patient recovery, with some clinics advising that you can be back at work within two days. Despite these findings, some clinicians have been reluctant to accept laser lipo, citing longer procedural times, increased risk of adverse reactions and lack of evidence supporting superiority over traditional liposuction.

Elise Bevan, a clinical negligence solicitor at Penningtons Manches LLP, is acting on behalf of a client who underwent laser lipo and has been left with disastrous results. Elise has the following advice: “If you’re considering laser lipolysis you may want to think twice. Laser lipo can be dangerous and the complications can be severe. In the quest to have the perfect body, laser lipo is touted as a safe cure-all for excess fat, but no one talks about laser lipo gone wrong, and it can go very wrong. Laser lipo is the use of a laser to liquefy the fat from areas of the body that need to be reshaped. Potential risks of laser lipo can range from infection, skin necrosis, dimpling, lumpiness, numbness, scarring, discoloration, or sagging skin, as well as discomfort in the surgically treated area. Since a laser is being inserted under the skin, burning of the underlying skin can also be a side effect. Pain from the procedure can last for months.

“While your appearance will be altered initially, cosmetic surgery is not an alternative to maintaining a healthy diet and exercising. It is important to be aware that while laser lipo may be able to change the shape of your body, it cannot address lifestyle issues. In addition it will not reduce the appearance of cellulite or stretch marks. As with all surgical procedures, there are also several risks and complications involved, including infection, blood clots, and scarring. It is far better to make long term lifestyle changes and lose weight through diet and exercise.”


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