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Does External Liposuction Really Work?

More patients are visiting their plastic surgeons due to confusion about their body contouring options. Several nonsurgical liposuction alternatives have gained popularity in recent years that claim traditional lipo is no longer needed now that external approaches are available. Does nonsurgical lipo really work for fine tuning the figure?

External Options

There are a few different options on the market today for a nonsurgical approach toward body sculpting:

  • Extreme cold: CoolSculpting® uses a special device to apply extreme cold to the fat cells, which ruptures the cell walls. The cells are eliminated naturally by the body over a period of several months.
  • Laser treatments: The most well-known of these is i-lipo™, which uses laser energy applied to the skin to trigger normal metabolic processes that break down fatty deposits.
  • Ultrasound: A handheld device sends low-level ultrasonic waves through the skin to reduce fat cells without incisions or scars.
  • Radio waves: The external application of radio waves reduces fat and promotes collagen production for tighter, smoother skin.

While some external options may show some improvements in some patients, the operative word here is “some.” Also, none of these are weight loss techniques; maintaining a healthy lifestyle is essential to ensuring liposuction results that last, whether internal or external.

Body Sculpting Results

So do any of these treatments really work? As with any medical advancement, there are always some surgeons who swear by the new methods and others who insist that only the tried and true approach is efficient. The bottom line is that not all of these options have been through a sufficient amount of clinical testing in order to determine their efficacy. Surgical lipo remains the most predictable choice for body contouring.

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December 20, 2013
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December 20, 2013