Are there any additional risks or complications associated with Power-Assisted Liposuction?

Are any risks higher with PAL than they are with traditional lipo?

Doctor Answers 9

Liposuction Risks

Thank you for your question. Fortunately, significant complications from liposuction surgery are infrequent. Liposuction surgery is one of the two most common procedures performed by plastic surgeons. Most often this surgery is performed without experiencing any major problem.

The subject of risks and potential complications of surgery is best discussed on a personal basis with you when you visit us during your consultation and your preoperative appointment. The risks in most surgeries are similar. Some of the potential complications that may be discussed with you include hematoma (an accumulation of blood under the skin that may require removal), infection, changes in sensation, scarring, allergic reactions, damage to underlying structures, need for revisions, unsatisfactory results possibly necessitating additional procedures and medical risks. Other risks more specific to liposuction may include indentations and irregularities. Best of luck!

Dhaval M. Patel 

Double Board Certified 

Plastic Surgeon 

Hoffman Estates 




Hoffman Estates Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 93 reviews

PAL- risks and benefits

Thanks for your question about liposuction.

Over the years many different devices and liposuction machines have emerged.  What we have learned with time is that PAL (power assisted liposuction) has remained the gold standard for high quality and even results.  More importantly using PAL and appropriate fat equalization at the end of the procedure has really improved our ability to great smooth and more predictable results.  PAL has not been shown to have higher risk than "traditional lipo".

Best Wishes

Steven M. Camp, MD
Fort Worth Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 93 reviews

Are there unique risk with PAL liposuction compared to traditional liposuction?

Hello there and thanks for the question!

Not in my experience.  In fact, it is smoother and a bit faster for the surgery.

In good health,

Ellen Mahony, MD

Ellen A. Mahony, MD
Westport Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Power Assisted Liposuction

PAL is a faster method of liposuction, but more controllable and accurate I believe. I think the results are better, smoother and more consistent. I do not believe the risks are higher than traditional liposuction. PAL is better! Regards, Dr Steve Merten, Sydney, Australia

Steve Merten, FRACS
Sydney Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 48 reviews

Fewer complications I'd say

Power assisted liposuction doesn't generate heat like other types, so thermal complications are minimized.  However, I find PAL allows me a finer touch when performing liposuction because I don't need to generate force with my arm.  This allows me to be more precise when removing fat and yielding a smoother result.  This is only my experience however and what is most important is the skill of the doctor.

Guy Cappuccino, MD
Mount Airy Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 90 reviews

PAL similar to standard Liposuction

Thanks for your question. Power-assisted liposuction differs from "standard" liposuction in that it vibrates to help break up the fat cells that are being suctioned. Unlike some other types of liposuction, there is no heat generated and so the complications should be similar.

Ross Blagg, MD
Austin Physician
5.0 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Are there additional risks specific to PAL

In comparison to traditional SAL, there are no additional risks that are specific to PAL. It's a great question because some liposuction variants generate heat, and the use of these technologies has been associated with a higher risk of skin injury, scarring, contour deformities and re-operation.

Owen Reid, MD
Richmond Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Risks with Power assisted liposuction

The use of power assist is a more efficient way of removing fat allowing the surgeon to focus more on contouring. Compared to traditional liposuction , the risks with PAL are not greater. The risks with liposuction in general has to do more with the experience of the surgeon. Therefore, it is important to see a board certified plastic surgeon  who performs many body contouring procedures. I personally prefer the use of PAL over conventional liposuction when performing pure liposuction procedures on my patients.Best wishes,Dr. Ravi Somayazula

Ravi Somayazula, DO
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 59 reviews


power assisted liposuction procedure that involves removing fatty deposits from different areas of the body, assisted by a computer generated nutational motion of the liposuction cannula (in several directions) Nutational Infrasonic Liposuction (NIL), which reduces the “trauma” in tissues the time of liposuction, and thus postoperative pain, ecchymosis (purple spots on the skin) and inflammation (edema) of the skin. Besides failing to generate heat in liposuction cannulas, decreases the possibility of skin burns which may generate other types of equipment used in lipolysis.

I hope the information has been helpful,

Dr. Eduardo Orozco

Eduardo Orozco, MD
Colombia Plastic Surgeon

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.