Valentine's Special

Would Liposuction or Cellulaze Work Better For You?

Every morning you get ready for the day ahead. At some point during your routine, you look in the mirror to make sure you’re presentable before heading out.

Chances are there are some features you really love about your body and maybe a few you don’t.

We all feel this way from time to time. It’s hard not to focus on love handles, saddlebags, and other “jiggly bits” that we’ve accumulated over the years. It can be tough to be 100% confident about ourselves when we feel we could do better at keeping our bodies fit and healthy.

The truth is that eating right and exercising doesn’t work for everyone. Some individuals struggle with metabolic conditions that make it hard to shed excess pounds. Others simply can’t find the time in their schedules to dedicate to weight loss.

Whether you have a medical condition or you’re looking for a way to sculpt parts of your body, plastic surgery provides plenty of options for you. There are multiple procedures that can help you.

Liposuction and Cellulaze are two of the most popular procedures used today. How can you know which procedure is right for you? Read on as we compare these two procedures to help you make the best choice.

Liposuction and Cellulaze: What’s the Difference?

Both of these procedures remove different kinds of unwanted fat from your body. Though they have this in common, liposuction and Cellulaze are two very different procedures that accomplish different aesthetic goals.

Liposuction: At The Centre, P.C., we use a procedure that is safer than traditional liposuction called SmartLipo™. SmartLipo™ is performed on smaller, more focused areas of the body. A laser is inserted into several small incisions and is used to break up fat and make it easier to be removed from the body.

Cellulaze: This revolutionary procedure breaks down the structure of the cellulite that’s under your skin. Cellulite is commonly referred to as “orange peel syndrome.” It gives your skin a lumpy or cottage cheese-like appearance. It’s seen commonly in the buttock and thigh area, but can occur in other portions of the body as well.

During Cellulaze, the surgeon makes a few very tiny incisions. A small laser is used to increase the thickness of your skin, loosen the fibrous bands that drag it down and liquefy the bumpy fat, that is then gently pressed out of the body.

Why Choose Liposuction Over Cellulaze and Vice Versa?

While they may sound the same, liposuction and Cellulaze remove different kinds of body fat. There are certain circumstances that call for liposuction, while others call for Cellulaze. You should always consult with your doctor about your specific needs, but it’s good to understand what each procedure is meant to do.

When to Choose Liposuction

Liposuction may be the best choice for you if you have pockets of fat you wish to get rid of. It can help with body shaping and contouring, as it can take little or a lot of fat until the desired shape is achieved. Liposuction is not used to achieve dramatic results. It is best used for small changes to areas like:

    • Thighs
    • Neck
    • Chin
    • Buttocks
    • Upper Arms
    • Calves
    • Back/Bra Line
    • Abdomen
    • Hips

When to Choose Cellulaze

Cellulaze is used exclusively for the removal of small amounts of cellulite. Cellulaze helps smooth the appearance of dimpled, cellulite-ridden skin so the body has a firmer and more toned appearance. If this is your goal and cellulite is your problem, Cellulaze might be what you need.

Cellulite typically affects women more than it does men. It forms in areas with little circulation and is generally seen on the lower half of the body, from the waist down.

Cellulite is organized into four grades:

  • Grade 0: Cellulite is not visible to the naked eye, even when the skin is pinched.
  • Grade 1: There is no appearance of cellulite when the individual is laying down or standing, but it becomes apparent when the skin is pinched or manipulated.
  • Grade 2: Cellulite can be seen when the individual is standing, but not when they are lying down.
  • Grade 3: Cellulite is apparent both when the individual is standing and when they are lying down.

Results and Recovery

Both SmartLipo™ and Cellulaze are outpatient procedures. They don’t require an overnight stay unless there are substantial complications during the procedure. Both procedures utilize very small incisions, so there is little to no scaring and no painful surgery site to heal from.

That said, each procedure does have unique characteristics of recovery and healing.

Recovery from Liposuction

Recovery time can range from 2-3 days to a full week. This depends on how much liposuction was performed and what your doctor believes is a suitable recovery time. Many doctors recommend that patients rest for the first day but suggest they make an effort to move around a little bit. Stitches are removed about a week after the procedure and most patients can engage in strenuous activity after 3-4 weeks.

You might see results in the first few days after your procedure. In most cases, your doctor will prescribe compression garments or bandages to minimize swelling and pain. It can take anywhere from 1-3 months for swelling to subside. Once it does, you will see the full scope of your liposuction results. 

Recovery From Cellulaze

The recovery time for Cellulaze is shorter than liposuction. Patients return to normal activities within 1-2 days and strenuous activities within 1-2 weeks. Swelling and bruising are common, as is some mild discomfort. Patients may experience a leaking of fluid from the incision site. This is normal and should subside within a day or two.

Results are instant, but, because of swelling, they may take 3 months to a year to see. During this time your skin will appear firmer and tighter and the dimpled cellulite appearance will be a thing of the past. 


These procedures are not for everyone. A local anesthetic is used in both procedures, so people who are allergic to lidocaine should discuss alternatives with their doctor. Pregnant women or those who are nursing are not usually good candidates. Below is a brief overview of the criteria used to determine whether an individual is a candidate for either procedure.

Liposuction: To get liposuction, the individual must be in good health and within 25 pounds or so of a healthy weight. They should have fat deposits that don’t go away with diet and exercise in target areas like the arms, waist, neck, or abdomen.

Cellulaze: Candidates for Cellulaze are women or men with a healthy weight that are concerned with the appearance of cellulite in their legs, buttocks, or stomach area.

 Results at The Centre, P.C.

When you come in for liposuction or Cellulaze at The Centre, P.C., you’ll benefit from an amazing experience, performed in a relaxing environment, by skilled professionals. Our plastic surgeons are board-certified and are up to date with the latest techniques. We can help you achieve the look you’ve been dreaming of. All it takes is one phone call.

Contact us at 574-968-9100 to schedule a consultation today.

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Meet the Doctors
Dr. Downs
Dr. Downs

Ronald K. Downs, M.D., F.A.C.S. founded The Centre, P.C. in Elkhart, Indiana in 1992. He is an active member in the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. Dr. Downs is also a member of The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, The American Medical Association, The Ohio Valley Plastic Surgery Society, The Rush Surgical Society, and The Indiana State Medical Association where he serves on the board of directors and has served as the president from 2003 to 2004.

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Dr. Downs
Dr. Macias

Dr. Macias completed her plastic and reconstructive surgery residency training at Spectrum Health/Michigan State University in Grand Rapids, Michigan. She is Board Certified with the American Board of Plastic Surgery.

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Dr. Viscardi
Dr. Viscardi

Patrick J. Viscardi, M.D. has been part of the surgical team at The Centre, P.C. since 1998. Dr. Viscardi graduated from Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire, as a summa cum laude. He received his Doctor of Medicine Degree from the University of Rochester in New York. Dr. Viscardi completed his internship and general surgery residency at the University of Louisville, where he served as chief resident from 1994 to 1995.

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