Updated: Aug 16
The Body Sculpting industry is comprised is two primary methods to treat fat deposits. Internal and external treatments. Here we will summarize many of them.
A sterile instrument is inserted into body to kill and/or remove fat cells. Results are significant and immediate but can have more pain and downtime than external treatments.Conventional (liposuction) Lipo- This is the oldest technology, is performed under sedation by Plastic Surgeons, is the most dangerous and has the most complications and deaths. The most common name is Micro Air which mechanically moves sharp cannula in a jack hammer or Jig Saw motion 40-60 times a minute. The procedure is painful as the cannula does not differentiate between the fat and blood vessels, fascia bands and nerve endings. Healing time is extensive weeks, and post-operative narcotics are required.
Funsculpting - Vibration Assisted Liposuction is a “3rd Generation” treatment launched in 2015 and has been taking the Body Sculpting industry by storm. Funsculpting is performed in a physicians office and does not require any general anesthesia or sedation Funsculpting does not cut, melt, laser or hammer fat, rather it gently dislodges the fat utilizing a round tipped canula with an oscillating vibration motion. This allows maximum preservation of fascial bands and connective tissue which leads to minimum downtime - only a few days. Further, the collagen synthesis action maximizes skin tightening in the treated areas. Vaser - Ultrasound system that came out around 2000. This is very high frequency 14,000 RPM’s and generates more heat than lasers. With this system the fat is melted which of course greatly impacts cell viability. Again nerve damage is a common complication and potential scarring and pigmentation changes are not uncommon. Laser lipolysis - Released in 1999, lasers are specific in targeting what are called chromospheres such as water, dermis, blood fat etc. Pulse widths have changed as well as times with newer systems but at the end of the day a laser is a laser. Again this is a slow system and all of the negatives associated with the Vaser system apply to all laser lipo systems as well regardless of age. In many instances laser lipo is performed with IV sedation plus tumescent. There is a benefit of skin tightening however it is uncertain if this is long term. All of the heat systems either internal or external will promote some collagen synthesis which aides in skin tightening but is typically partnered with a supplemental treatment like Renuvion.
These devices do not enter your body but treat from the outside with cold, heat or other energy forms to kill fat cells for your body to metabolize. They typically require multiple treatments spread over 6-12 months for desired results.
Cool Sculpting - Released in 2011, it kills fat cells either by freezing. Abs & Flanks treatments recommend at least 5 treatments 30 days apart to achieve desired results. It can treat patients up to a maximum patient BMI of 28. Minimal skin tightening if any can be expected. No downtime but many patients experience soreness for a few days. Em Sculpt - Uses radiofrequency and high intensity electromagnetic energy to kill subcutaneous fat cells and at the same time tone muscle. No downtime but treatment area will be sore for a few days. This is not a fully comprehensive list, but highlights some attributes of both internal and external treatments.