Smartlipo™ by Cynosure® (Laser-Assisted Liposuction, LAL) - San Diego, CA*

35 Procedures ( View All )


Smartlipo targets unwanted fat on the abdomen, thighs, arms, neck, buttocks, and elsewhere using laser-assisted liposuction. Dr. Chaffoo uses the Cynosure Smartlipo TriPlex system, an advanced device that reduces the procedure time and requires less recovery than tumescent liposuction. Smartlipo tightens skin and is also an effective cellulite treatment. For many years at Dr. Richard Chaffoo's La Jolla practice, liposuction has remained an ever-popular way for men and women to reduce stubborn fat. Although it's effective, traditional liposuction isn't the best choice for everybody — particularly those who are in search of a faster recuperation. Smartlipo is an alternative that extracts fat just as traditional liposuction does, but it uses the assistance of a laser to dislodge and melt fat first for easier removal. When you decide to undergo cosmetic surgery, it's important to feel comfortable and confident about the plastic surgeon you choose. Patients appreciate triple board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Richard Chaffoo because he makes their goals a priority and strives to exceed their expectations with natural-looking improvements.

Before Surgery

Dr. Chaffoo is among a rare number of triple board-certified plastic surgeons. His patients rely on him for his extensive training, years of experience, and his natural eye for aesthetics for a wide range of procedures. Because of their nature, Smartlipo treatments require a honed artistic sense and familiarity with the proportions of an appealing body. Dr. Chaffoo has developed these skills and is uniquely qualified to sculpt and tone the bodies of many patients. When you meet with Dr. Chaffoo for a complimentary consultation to discuss fat reduction, he will evaluate your body and describe what makes a good Smartlipo candidate. Just as with traditional liposuction, people considering Smartlipo in La Jolla and nearby San Diego should keep in mind that the procedure isn't intended for weight loss. Instead, good candidates are at or near their ideal weights but are still bothered by localized areas of fat on their body.

Surgical Technique

Dr. Chaffoo may use general anesthesia or local anesthesia with sedation during your Smartlipo procedure, depending on which areas of the body you'd like to treat. Once you are anesthetized, Dr. Chaffoo marks the treated area to guide him during surgery. A tumescent solution that minimizes bleeding and helps cause the fatty tissue to swell is injected. Then, Dr. Chaffoo makes a tiny incision, about the size of a pen tip, then he inserts the laser fiber through a small tube and into your body. The laser ruptures fat cell membranes, permanently destroying the cells. Dr. Chaffoo suctions the liquefied fat from the target area using a thin tube called a cannula. There is minimal discomfort during the procedure. Depending on the size of the area or areas being treated, a Smartlipo procedure may take between 1 – 2 hours. The minimally invasive nature of Smartlipo results in a shorter recovery time than what most patients experience after traditional liposuction surgery.


Although Smartlipo typically requires less downtime than traditional liposuction, candidates should also be able to devote a few days to caring for themselves at home. During your complimentary consultation, Dr. Chaffoo can give you a better idea of what you can expect from your Smartlipo procedure. After Smartlipo, it's common for patients to experience mild swelling, bruising, and soreness, but these symptoms typically persist for a much shorter time than with a traditional liposuction procedure. Dr. Chaffoo advises rest for a few days and a gradual return to more strenuous activity, such as exercising, over the course of the following weeks.


Within only a couple of days, most Smartlipo patients are back to work and enjoying their improved contours. By sticking to a healthy diet and exercise habits, you can maintain your new, more proportionate contours for many years.

Expected Costs

A Smartlipo procedure can cost between $2,500 - $5,000, depending on the number of areas being treated and the amount of fat being removed. Dr. Chaffoo can give you a better estimate of your costs after creating a treatment plan during your initial consultation. La Jolla Plastic Surgery can help you find medical financing to make your Smartlipo procedure affordable.

Request Consultation

Plan Your Procedure

Average Cost  
$2,500 - $5,000
Recovery Time  
3 - 7 Days
Average Procedure Time  
1 - 2 Hours
Post-op Follow-up  
Procedure Recovery Location  
Contact Us

Smartlipo FAQs

Conditions Treated?

Smartlipo is best for patients who are at a healthy, stable weight with good skin elasticity. Smartlipo laser-assisted liposuction can:

  • Remove stubborn pockets of fat that are resistant to weight loss through diet and exercise
  • Reduce fat in all areas of the body, including the hips, thighs, stomach, buttocks, arms, neck, and face
  • Contour disproportionate fat deposits in one area or several areas of the body

Skin Tightening?

Because Smartlipo uses laser energy to emulsify unwanted fat, the technique also helps tighten skin in the treatment area. Heat from the laser helps stimulate the production of new collagen, a protein that is an essential component of tighter skin.

Reduce Neck Fat?

Even though liposuction is often thought of as a body contouring treatment, it's also effective for enhancing the definition of your neck. Smartlipo is an excellent tool for targeting the fat deposits in the neck and along the jawline that result in a double chin. In addition to removing fat with precision, Smartlipo can tighten loose neck skin.

Choosing the Right Treatment?

Dr. Chaffoo helps you decide which procedure, or combination of procedures, is best for you. During your consultation, Dr. Chaffoo will listen to your goals and assess your physique before helping you determine whether traditional liposuction or Smartlipo is best for you.

Will I Lose Weight?

Once all of the targeted fat has been dissolved and removed, then yes – you will lose weight. However, Smartlipo, or any other liposuction technique, is not a treatment for being overweight. Patients should be as close to their goal weight as possible before considering any liposuction procedure. 

Related Procedures

*Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary from person to person. Images may contain models.