One Real Life SmartLipo ExperienceJanuary 5, 2017
Read one patient’s story about her Smartlipo journey:
Why I Considered Smartlipo
Here’s my back story: I was cursed with saddlebags. Even as a skinny, awkward teen, I was a size 3 on the top and 5 on the bottom.
15 years and 20 pounds later my thighs certainly haven’t gotten any better. Pencil skirts and skinny jeans? Forget it.
Why I chose Bruno|Brown Plastic Surgery
I did a LOT of research online, asked friends and read reviews. I had consultations at two places, and decided on Bruno|Brown Plastic Surgery. Their reputation is superb, the staff is funny and kind, and the doctors make you feel incredibly safe in their hands.
For plastic surgery novices like me, here’s how it goes:
• Talk to a friendly medical assistant about what you’re thinking
• Put on a robe
• Talk to the doctor about your goals
• Take the robe off so the doctor can see your problem zones
• Take some ‘before’ photos (your choice- I definitely wanted to see the before & after!)
• Re-robe and talk about the procedure and the doctor’s recommendations
• Ask any questions you may have- (As a side note, the consultation is free and they will email you a quote afterwards. I never, ever felt pressured.)
My questions were:
Q: How long until I can work out?
A: A couple days
Post procedure thought: While definitely true that you can, I didn’t feel up to it for about 4 days.
Q: How long until I can fly?
A: A couple days
Post procedure thought: You’re up and moving, but if you’ve had anything you need to sit on done, I think you’d be uncomfortable for about a week.
Q: How much does it hurt?
A: Not much at all- we’ll do everything we can to make you comfortable.
Post procedure thought: This is true. I’ll get to specifics below.
Q: How much time should I take off work?
A: Take the day after off- you can work from home, but you’ll be a little sore.
Post procedure thought: This was good advice as I definitely wasn’t up to going to the office the day after.
Nearly none. I took the afternoon and the following day off work. They’ll tell you roughly how long the procedure will take, so I had someone waiting to pick me up (if you want to take certain medications before, you need a ride. I got a ride.)
It’s an in-office procedure without anesthesia, so you can eat/drink/do all your normal daily tasks.
The Smartlipo Procedure:
First, you put on a little blue paper underwear and a robe. The doctor comes in to re-discuss what you’re going to do and to give you the calming meds if you want them. (As discussed, no question. Of course I want them.)
From there, you walk to the procedure room and it’s go time. You get on what is essentially a hospital bed and they cover the areas that aren’t being worked on. You also get to keep your little blue underwear on, so I never really felt exposed.
The first thing that happens is numbing. It’s a bunch of tiny shots to numb the entire area. He said that it may pinch, but I barely felt anything at all.
Pain scale: 1 out of 10
Once you’re done being numbed, they start the laser process. The doctor was great about telling me exactly what he was doing and when something new would start. He also continued to check in to make sure I didn’t feel any pain.
Pain scale: 1 out of 10
Post-laser, the suction starts. This is the most ‘painful’ part of the procedure, although I was pretty comfortable. Occasionally you feel a bit of a twinge, but it’s more odd than painful, like it should hurt but doesn’t.
Pain scale: 2 out of 10
One thing to note is that if you’re facing the tubes, you can actually see your fat getting sucked out. I’m not that hard core, so I had to turn away so I didn’t see bits of me flying past.
What do you do during the procedure?
I was comfortable enough that we chatted almost the whole time. I’m kind of a talker, and was feeling pretty good from the pills, so I asked a lot of questions, talked about where everyone was from, travel, all sorts of things. We even talked politics (I know, I know, a divisive topic while doing a medical procedure is probably a big no-no. I can’t help it and in my defense the final Hillary/Donald debate had been the night before. Plus, we’re in DC. Politics are bound to come up, right?).
Immediately post procedure and recovery:
As soon as you finish, you have to put on compression pants. You will wear these for two infernal, seemingly endless weeks. I found myself taking longer showers to delay putting them back on.
They are like super-reinforced Spanx and they’re pretty tight so the medical assistant had to help me get them on. Somewhat ridiculously, this is probably the worst part of the procedure.
You’re fairly drugged when you leave and get a few more pain pills for the road. It’s sore, but manageable. I walked up three flights of stairs about 30 minutes after we finished.
Post-procedure pain scale: 4 out of 10
By far your worst day. Because of the area I had done, it felt like I did 500 squats the day before. Manageable, but not comfortable, and you’ll likely make a lot of noise getting in and out of chairs.
Pain scale: 5/6 out of 10 without Tylenol, 3/4 out of 10 with Tylenol
Bruising factor: Very little- but watch out, it’s coming.
Significantly decreasing soreness each day. On day 2, I went grocery shopping. I was definitely walking a little slower than normal, but it wasn’t that bad.
The worst part of this timeframe is definitely the compression shorts. The medical assistant told me that I should probably have my husband ready to help me if I took a shower early on, but I refused to let him see the bruising and marks, so I struggled through. (Side note: He saw the shorts, but no marks and no bruises. I’m fairly proud of that.) I’d highly recommend not showering if at all possible until day 4 because taking the shorts on and off is by far the most painful part of the entire process. Again, expect to make some noises doing this.
Pain scale: Decreasing daily- I’d say about a 4 without Tylenol
Bruising factor: Pretty spectacular. You probably haven’t seen bruises like this since you were a kid learning how to rollerblade.
Very localized pain, and only when going up the stairs.
Pain scale: 2. I stopped taking Tylenol on day 5 and was fine.
Bruising factor: About half gone one-week post procedure
Residual swelling, but no pain at all.
Day 14: Post-procedure visit
Celebration! This was the last day of the compression shorts. The bruises were pretty much gone, but I still had ‘staining’. The doctor estimated another couple weeks before it cleared up and I would say that was spot on.
Seeing complete results, which is so exciting! I think I saw about 85% of the total results after a month, but not 100% until about two and a half months in.
My Smartlipo Results:
I went down an entire pant size, but, perhaps more important than that, the entire ‘size’ came out of my problem zone! Smartlipo is more about sculpting and less about weight loss (I only dropped 2 pounds in total).
I went through my closet and put on all those things I loved but didn’t look great in and they suddenly worked. (I am not joking- I did this about 5 hours after the procedure).
I bought my first pair of skinny jeans and didn’t feel dumpy. I used to avoid pants (a serious pain in our snowy winters) and now I look in the mirror while wearing jeans and think I look good!
All in all, this is some of the best money I have ever spent on myself. Truly.
My only regret?
Waiting for years to make the decision.
So, to those of you that work out, eat decently(-ish), and have a problem area that just. won’t. die., I could not recommend this more. Very little pain, very quick healing, and an increase in self-confidence and happiness that will surprise you.