By William Payton

Tampa, Fla-based cosmetic surgeon Thomas Su, MD, super-specializes in liposuction, but he performs his cases with a twist—one that leads to more precise, sculpted results. Su calls it Interactive Liposuction, and he tells PSP a little bit more about his approach.

1) What is Interactive Liposuction?

Interactive Liposuction is awake tumescent liposuction, which involves a significant amount of active patient participation.

2) What led you to embrace this approach?

I have been passionate about drawing and sculpting the human figure since my teens, and have a BA in Fine Arts. The Interactive Liposuction approach allows me to perform liposuction more artistically, just like sculpting on wood or clay.

3) How many cases have you done?

I’ve performed more than 12,000 Interactive Liposuction cases.

4) Are there any safety concerns with this procedure?

Interactive Liposuction is much safer because it improves control of the cannula and reduces the risk of skin or muscle injury.

5) Explain the protocol, please.

Patients are not given a sedative. During the surgery, patients are asked to periodically tense the muscle groups in the area of surgery and to hold their body firm. At times, the patient is also asked to stand to check the body area.

6) Why?

Tensing the muscles creates a firm surface below the fat, which allows the surgeon to have a much better feel and control of the fat being sculpted. Also, having the patient stand allows me to see bulges that are invisible if the patient is lying down.

7) How does this approach improve on results seen with traditional tumescent liposuction?

Interactive Liposuction allows a surgeon to artistically achieve smoother and more accurate results. It also allows a surgeon to do superficial liposuction, as I do in my practice, and achieve a high degree of skin retraction.

8) How do you sculpt “Celebrity Arms”?

Celebrity Arms is a high-definition circumferential sculpting of the arms and shoulders, resulting in a defined and athletic look with excellent skin retraction. This type of sculpting is highly dependent on Interactive Liposuction.

9) What body parts are male patients interested in sculpting?

In men, we use the Interactive approach on the abdomen, waist, chest, and neck/chin.

10) What body parts are female patients interested in sculpting?

In women, the Interactive approach is used on all the traditional areas, but is particularly effective in delicate areas such as the “cankles” and arms.

William Payton is a contributing writer for Plastic Surgery Practice magazine. He can be reached via PSPeditor@allied360.com.