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How Does Lipo Fat Transfer Differ From Traditional Liposuction?

Nov 22, 2018 | Body

Men and women both dream of the 'perfect body'. It's not easy to achieve those perfect results, though. Many people will follow a strict diet and exercise routine but just can't seem to get the fat off in certain areas of their bodies.

Cosmetic surgeries are becoming increasingly popular. There are various different procedures, including breast augmentation, butt lifts, traditional lipo, or lipo fat transfer. Board certified plastic surgeon, Doctor Jaime Schwartz, is Beverly Hills top body sculpting expert.

It wasn't long ago when people were being 'outed' for cosmetic procedures. Now, many people are embracing it, posting their results all over Instagram and Facebook.

In one year's time, there were approximately 235,237 liposuction surgeries performed, costing around $750 million total.

This article is going to explain the difference between traditional liposuction surgeries and lipo fat transfer procedures.


What is liposuction? Liposuction is a form of cosmetic surgery intended to contour the body into a more desirable shape. Lipo works by suctioning out fat cells from specific areas of the body.

Liposuction is not a form of weight loss.

Lipo is intended for people who have already lost fat through traditional diet and exercise. Once that person reaches their goal weight lipo comes into play.

So how does it work? What are the benefits? What are the risks?

Traditional liposuction procedures are performed with two small incisions. The doctor then inserts a cannula. This is a thin, rod-like tool that uses suction to remove fat cells. 

Doctor Jaime Schwartz uses the cannula in a crisscross fashion to achieve the best results.

These are just a few of the benefits of traditional liposuction:

  • Lipo can be used to treat certain medical conditions, including but not limited to Lymphedema (excess fluid that collects in tissue), Gynecomastia (accumulation of fat under a man's breasts), and Lipomas (benign, fatty tumors).
  • It can be helpful in reducing cellulite rippling. Cellulite is when fat cells ripple under the skin, giving the skin an unpleasant or unwanted texture.
  • Overall self-confidence boost. As aforementioned, it's not uncommon for both men and women to struggle to achieve desired results through only diet and exercise. This tends to cause a sense of failure. Lipo is a way to help those men and women achieve their best results and get them feeling great about themselves again.

Again, these are only a few of the benefits of a traditional liposuction procedure.

What about risks? The following is a list of risks and side effects associated with traditional lipo.

  • Bruising - Bruising can last up to a couple weeks after the procedure. It is typically minimal and will disappear over time.
  • Numbness - Like bruising, numbness is usually limited to a short duration.
  • Infection - Infection may occur at the incision sites.
  • Burns - The constant motion of the cannula can cause friction burns to the skin.
  • Internal Punctures - If the doctor inserts the cannula too deep into the abdomen it is possible for it to puncture certain organs. This can cause internal bleeding and other serious side effects.

This is not a complete list of possible risks. Be sure to have a conversation with your doctor before deciding on traditional liposuction to access all of the risks, as each body type reacts differently.


Lipo fat transfer is a form of liposuction that is getting more and more attention. Lipo fat transfer is the act of removing fat cells from one area of the body and injecting it into another.

Ever heard the term, "the boobs are the first to go"? When doing cardio workouts, the body burns fat. It doesn't take into account where one might actually want the fat to be burned from. Having a fat transfer procedure is a natural way to contour the body once a person's BMI has reached a desirable level.

How it works:

Lipo fat transfer works differently than traditional lipo procedures. This is a non-invasive surgery, meaning the doctor will not make any incisions. Instead, a small needle is inserted into the body to pull out fat cells from a specific section of the body, usually the tummy of thighs. Then the fat cells are run through a canister for a purification process. Once the fat cells are purified they are then injected back into the body in the desired area.

There are many benefits to a lipo fat transfer, some might include:

  • Fast recovery time - most clients are able to return to work less than a week after the procedure.
  • There is no scarring. Since there are no incisions needed for this procedure there will be no visible scarring.
  • Less chance for infection - while it is still possible to get an infection, the risks are reduced because of the lack of incisions.
  • It's totally natural. Many clients are looking for a natural approach to cosmetics. This is an alternative to having implants put in and replaced after time.
  • It can be permanent. A healthy diet and exercise regimen is still important to keep the new shape, but the effects of the procedure are permanent.

The risks of this procedure are similar to those of traditional liposuction.

  • Bruising - While the bruising may not be as visible as with traditional lipo, it is still present with this procedure.
  • Possible rippling - It's possible that the skin will the fat was transferred from will have a ripple look to it.
  • Multiple injections - It can take a few injections before the full desired effect is achieved. When the fat cells are injected into a new area of the body, some will die and be absorbed into the body. There is no way for doctors to tell how much fatty tissue will die, so it can be a trial and error situation.

With every type of procedure, risks will present themselves. There are more possible risks to a lipo fat transfer, these should be discussed during the initial consultation appointment.


Traditional liposuction and lipo fat transfer procedures are very similar. It is actually very common to have both procedures done at the same time. They can both be performed in the same operation. The best way to determine if a person is a good candidate for either procedure is to attend a consultation appointment with Beverly Hills top body contouring plastic surgeon, Doctor Jaime Schwartz.  



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