In PAL, a reciprocating cannula, or hollow tube (powered by electricity) powers through tissue and vacuums out fat and fibrous or scarred tissue reportedly with minimal effort. The back and forth motion of the tip of the cannula facilitates passage through tissue.
Power-Assisted Lipoplasty (PAL) technique was approved for general use by the FDA in December 1998.
Liposculpture is a form of cosmetic surgery that involves the removal of fat from one or more areas of the body and reshapes them for better aesthetic view. The most popular areas for liposculpture are the abdomen, buttocks and thighs, but it can be performed on other areas, also.
The mechanism of power-assisted lipoplasty is performed in conjunction with the tumescent liposuction technique. Tumescent lipoplasty involves the injection of a high quantity of solution before the actual suctioning takes place. This solution is a mixture of a local anesthetic and a vasoconstrictor. The local anesthetic is often lidocaine and helps to reduce pain. A common vasoconstrictor is epinephrine, which minimizes bleeding during the surgery. The solution is injected directly into the fat tissue.
- Smaller incision. A power-assisted lipoplasty cannula actually has a much smaller diameter than the conventional cannula. The suction tube is also smaller. Using a smaller cannula and tub e allows the surgeon to perform the procedure through a smaller incision. The smaller the incision, the less chance there is for infection to set in, less healing time is required, and patients have fewer scars from the procedure.
- Precision. Power-assisted lipoplasty allows for greater precision. This is partly due to the use of the thinner cannula. A smaller wand means a surgeon can target areas more precisely. This allows for an increased ability to sculpt the tissue into a more natural and aesthetically pleasing form. The precision of PAL also means that surrounding areas experience less severe trauma.
- Reduced risk. Those who undergo power-assisted lipoplasty are exposed to fewer risks and have fewer complications than patients undergoing older, more conventional liposuction techniques. Those who may have greater risk because of other associated factors can greatly benefit from PAL.
- Reduced recovery time. Patients undergoing PAL require a shorter recovery period than those undergoing other types of liposuction.
- Efficiency. Power-assisted liposuction can remove up to 30 percent more fat than other types.