Salus Gradus (Safe Steps) Liposuction is an elective, cosmetic surgery wherein fat under the skin is safely sucked out. In general, there are only two major types of liposuction, traditional and tumescent. For traditional liposuction, the patient is “put out” or put under general anesthesia or is sedated with IV drugs. General anesthesia and IV sedation increases the risks of complications during and after liposuction. For total tumescent liposuction, the patient is never “put out” or sedated. The patient does not feel pain because the treatment area is completely numbed by the local infusion of numbing fluid into the fatty area.
Neither general anesthesia or IV sedation are necessary for liposuction. While these two interventions make liposuction more convenient for the surgeon, they increase patients’ risk for complications during and after the surgery. Because liposuction of any type is always an elective, cosmetic procedure, this surgery can always be thoughtfully planned out to achieve the best cosmetic result in the safest way possible.
Total Tumescent Liposuction (TTL) is the safest way to remove excess fat from under the skin. The reason TTL is safer than sedation Liposuction is that with TTL, the patients’ ability to breath on their own is never turned off or compromised with systemic medication.
The word “Tumescence” means to swell or engorge with fluid. During this procedure, the surgeon infiltrates the treatment area with tumescent fluid. This fluid contains salt water, very weak Lidocaine and even weaker epinephrine. The weak Lidocaine takes all the feeling away from the treatment area. The weak epinephrine prevents bleeding.
While the patient is awake, alert and breathing on their own, the surgeon uses a thin suction probe to suck fat from under the skin. The patient goes home 20 minutes after the procedure.
At The Liposuction Center, we never remove more than 3 liters of fat at one time. Even when our patients have more than 3 liters of fat to be removed, it is safer for us to remove a large volume of fat by removing smaller volumes over several low-cost sessions, 6-8 weeks apart. This safer, step-wise approach to liposuction is called the Salus Gradus approach.