Updated July 2018
When thinking about the major signs of facial aging, excess fat probably isn’t one that immediately leaps to mind. Yet, fatty deposits through the face, especially in the neck and jowl area, can dramatically age your appearance.
Fat buildup in these areas also contributes to making patients look heavier than their total weight reflects. Liposuction, especially when used in conjunction with fat transfer, can dramatically improve facial contours. However, due to the delicacy of the skin and tissue as well as the smaller volume of the treatment area, taking the right approach is essential.
UAL vs. Tumescent Lipo
The two most popular approaches toward facial liposuction are ultrasonic-assisted lipo and traditional tumescent lipo performed with a microcannula. There are pros and cons to each:
- Tumescent Lipo: Tumescent lipo is still the most popular liposculpture procedure; many surgeons have more experience using this approach. Although the use of a narrower diameter cannula does minimize the risks of uneven results, that possibility does still remain.
- UAL: The precision targeting made possible through the use of ultrasonic energy makes UAL ideal for treating smaller areas that are more difficult to address. It’s necessary to choose a cosmetic surgeon who is experienced with UAL in order to prevent complications related to excess energy delivery.
It’s not uncommon to combine both techniques to more fully meet the needs of the individual patient. Facial liposuction is more successful in patients with excellent skin elasticity; skin tone is a more critical consideration than chronological age in terms of outcome. Older patients who have greater skin laxity may consider incorporating facial implants or a facelift for the best results.