There are a few reasons why millions of adults start taking a more discerning look at their bodies around this time of year. One is that we’ve been conditioned to set goals at the beginning of every new year. Another is that summer is now on the horizon, albeit still months away. Then, we are also inundated with the idea of New Year, New You. We’re not about creating a whole new Self; we’re about bringing out all that is already inherently good and beautiful. In some cases, to do that means to shed some old baggage. We offer several ways to shed the baggage of unwanted fat, from liposuction and abdominoplasty to a few nonsurgical options. We’ll talk about these treatments here.
Nonsurgically, there are essentially three approaches that are taken to reduce body fat. These are heating, freezing, and chemical dissolution. Each of these methods takes a fair amount of time to achieve the desired outcome when compared to liposuction. For this reason, now is the best time to schedule your body contouring consultation so you can have the most beautiful summer.
Heat-based body contouring treatments generally work via radiofrequency energy. During treatment, the target area is bombarded with radiofrequency waves. This causes the tiny molecules in tissue to vibrate, resulting in friction and heat. When fat is heated to about 46° Celcius and the temperature is sustained for 20 minutes or more, approximately 60% of the fat cells exposed to the energy are programmed for death. The process is called apoptosis, and it occurs painlessly and naturally. The fat cells that are destroyed are picked up by the lymphatic system and eliminated. They are gone for good. In our Louisville medical spa, we perform radiofrequency body contouring using the Exilis and Vanquish devices. One of the benefits of using heat is that some degree of tissue contraction may also occur, resulting in firmer, tighter skin.
The freezing method of fat-reduction is known as cryolipolysis, and CoolSculpting is the most well-known and reputable device that utilizes freezing temperature to contour the body. During CoolSculpting sessions, the patient has an applicator “attached” to their treatment area via suction. The fat that is drawn into the chamber cools within 5 to 10 minutes. The remainder of the treatment session sustains the target temperature that causes crystals to form in the targeted fat cells. Studies indicate that approximately 50% of the exposed fat undergoes apoptosis via cryolypolysis. Like radiofrequency treatments, CoolSculpting results in cell death and the removal of fat cells through the lymphatic system.
Years ago, doctors used a treatment called Lipodissolve to chemically disrupt the structure of fat cells. The broader use of chemicals like deoxycholic acid and phosphatidylcholine produced marginal results and tended to cause more discomfort than was worth it. Today, chemical fat dissolution is used in a much more refined manner. For the past few years, Kybella injections have achieved safe, comfortable, and gorgeous results in reducing submental fullness under the chin.
One of the primary differences between our non-surgical body contouring options and surgical treatments is that they require multiple sessions to achieve optimal results. Still, the final outcome is satisfying and can be long-lasting. To learn more or to schedule your body contouring consultation in our Louisville office, contact us at 502-425-5200.