Can Smartlipo Be Used To Remove Lipomas?

Q: Dr. Eppley, I am interested in a Smartlipo laser liposuction procedure. I have a fatty tumor behind my arm and would like to remove it with the least invasive procedure. I also have fatty tumors in my legs which would love for them to be gone also.

A: Smartlipo or laser liposuction is one possible treatment approach for smaller lipomas. While all of these lipomas could be simply removed by excision, I could understand why you would not want the fine line scars. What is important to understand is that treating them by Smartlipo/laser liposuction is not quite the same as removing traditional unwanted fat. Unwanted fat is soft non-encapsulated fat that extracts easily and thoroughly after being partially liquified by the laser energy by small cannula liposuction. In contrast, lipomas are well encapsulated ‘balls’ of fat that are really benign tumors. The laser energy may break them up into small pieces but it does not necessarily liquify them completely and thus they are not as easy to extract by liposuction. The point being is that the laser liposuction treatment method of lipomas is best viewed as a reduction method that may or may not result in them being completely removed.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana