Smart Lipo for Patients with Uncontrolled Diabetes?

I have just found out that I have diabetes and not taking any medication for it. Can I go ahead with my scheduled Smart Lipo on the abdomen. I am 42 years old, female and obese.

Doctor Answers 5

Not a good idea

 If you have diabetes and not taking medication,this means that you are border line and have diabetes due to obesity. You need to see a diatetian to control you diabetes and you may have delay healing if your blood sugar is high.

New Orleans Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 124 reviews

Smart Lipo for patients with uncontrolled diabetes

As a Clinical Instructor in Smart Lipo I have personally done a number of chemical diabetics. I require a FULL medical clearance prior to doing these or ant diabetes patients in my practice. Healing can be longer and the infection risks are higher. 


Smart Lipo is NOT for obese patients. BE CAREFUL.

Darryl J. Blinski, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 174 reviews

Control your diabetes before considering surgery

Safety is always the priority. You should have your diabetes treated and under control before even considering surgery. Smartlipo is not a treatment for obesity, it is a shaping technique. Vaser and Smartlipo are both good body scultpting procedures that can improve your shape if you are healthy and not too overweight. I recommend seeing your primary care doctor before any surgery.

Daryl K. Hoffman, MD
San Jose Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Please do NOT have this surgery!!

Hi there-

I could not agree more than I do with Dr. Aldea....

You are an exceedingly poor candidate for a body contouring procedure in the first place, because you are obese and diabetic...

In the second place, it turns out that (in my opinion, and in the opinion of almost all Board Certified Plastic Surgeons) Smart Lipo is NOT so smart...

The device uses a LASER to cook your fat. Because it IS a laser, it actually also cooks WHATEVER IT IS POINTED AT. This means that your blood vessels, nerves, muscles, skin, etc, will ALL be burned by the laser as well.

The doctors using these devices try to make it sound like this is a good thing- telling patients that they will have less bruising because the laser cooks their blood vessels, but the truth is that your body NEEDS those blood vessels! This is especially true in diabetics, who already have problems with their small blood vessels.

The VASER, which uses ultrasound, destroys and liquefies fat WITHOUT DAMAGING blood vessels, nerves, and other tissues. It is a much better tool.

I am concerned, however, that your doctor is NOT a board certified plastic surgeon. Why do I think this might be the case? Because:

  • I don't know any Board Certified Plastic Surgeons who would do the procedure you are describing- we have the training and expertise to understand that liposuction in any form is NOT a weight loss operation- it is a SHAPING operation.
  • Further, we would probably have offered you a better option for removal of excess if that is what your goal is.
  • I don't know any Board Certified Plastic Surgeons using Smart Lipo, as we understand other options are safer, easier, more reliable, and give better outcomes...
  • In my community, the only people using Smart Lipo are eye doctors, urologists, and others with no residency training in liposuction- and I see many of their patients complaining of the deformities they now have.

PLEASE do not have this procedure. I would worry that you are risking much more than you may be aware.

Armando Soto, MD, FACS
Orlando Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 159 reviews

SmartLipo and Obesity

Liposuction is NOT the appropriate body contouring modality for Obesity. Safe liposuction in an out patient setting is limited to the removal of 5 quarts of fat - no more - in one session. Going over this volume would require at least an overnight hospitalization.

SmartLipo is often done under Tumescent anesthesia and is limited to small volume liposuction tolerated in an awake patient. Unlike VASER liposuction which uses ultrasound which breaks up ONLY fat cells, SmartLipo heats and cooks everything in its path NON selectively destroying fat , blood vessels, nerves, lymphatics and lymphatics. For this reason I do not plan on using the SmartLipo anytime soon and even if I was forced to, I would not offer it to an obese diabetic which is prone to complications.

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 109 reviews

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.