What to Know About Nonsurgical Body Sculpting

Nonsurgical body sculpting is a procedure used to remove or reduce pockets of stubborn fat. The process is also known as nonsurgical fat reduction. Various nonsurgical body sculpting techniques are available to help you shape and contour your body.

What Is Nonsurgical Body Sculpting?

Nonsurgical body sculpting is not supposed to serve as a weight loss solution. It is ideal for people who have attained their desired weight but wish to get rid of stubborn fat pockets. Usually, this means excess fat that stubbornly resists diet and exercise. To qualify for most body contouring procedures, you must have a body mass index of less than 30.

Several sessions will be required for a nonsurgical body sculpting procedure. Afterwards, you may look shapelier and more toned.

How Does Nonsurgical Body Sculpting Work?

Nonsurgical body sculpting techniques work in one of two ways. Some work by freezing fat cells and ultimately destroying them.

Other methods use heat to reduce fat in the targeted areas. The techniques are safe for use in a number of areas:

  • upper arms
  • abdomen
  • thighs
  • love handles or excess fat around the hips and abdomen

The following nonsurgical fat reduction treatments are available:

Cryolipolysis or CoolSculpting: Cryolipolysis is a minimally invasive technology that relies on extreme cold to break down fat cells, reducing fat pockets.

The surgeon places a paneled or cupped device on top of your skin around the area to be treated. The device then lowers the temperature enough to freeze the fat cells and destroy them.

The muscle, skin, and nerve tissue cells remain unharmed as they freeze at lower temperatures than fat cells do. Cryolipolysis:

  • is an FDA-approved procedure, safe for the hips, abdomen, inner and outer thighs, the underarms, the chin, and under the buttocks;
  • is ideal for patients who want to reduce fat bulges without reshaping their bodies;
  • can potentially reduce fat by up to 25% per treatment;
  • takes 35 to 60 minutes to perform and produces little discomfort although it produces an intense feeling of coldness;
  • yields noticeable results within 1 month and maximum results after 2 to 3 months; and
  • yields long-lasting results for as long as you don't gain significant weight.

Continued

Laser Treatment : SculpSure is an example of a treatment used for body contouring. It works through the application of controlled heat to dismantle subcutaneous fat.

During laser treatment, the targeted fatty tissue is heated until the fat cells begin to break down. At the same time, a cooling mechanism ensures that your skin stays unharmed. SculpSure:

  •  is FDA approved for reducing fat on the abdomen and flanks and may also be recommended by your doctor for other parts of the body,
  • is painless and may produce a warm sensation during treatment,
  • can be completed in approximately 25 minutes per treatment area,
  • produces noticeable results in approximately 6 weeks and maximum results in 12 weeks, and
  • provides lasting results as long as you don't gain significant weight.

Red Light Therapy : Red light therapy is among the newest technologies cleared by the FDA for nonsurgical fat reduction. The procedure requires a specialized lamp that sends light of specific wavelengths through the skin. Triggered by the light, the targeted fat cells create small openings through which they release some of their contents.

The fat cells subsequently shrink in size to bring about the desired fat loss. UltraSlim is one of the treatments that use red light therapy. It causes excess fat to be released as waste and has several advantages:

  • It is suitable for the hips, abdomen, thighs, and other areas as recommended by your specialist.
  • It is noninvasive with minimal downtime.
  • It is quick, taking about 30 minutes to perform.
  • It yields results in just three or more treatments. 
  • It is a low-risk treatment procedure with no established side effects although it is not recommended if you're pregnant or if your liver function is compromised.
  • It yields lasting results as long as you don't gain significant weight.

Benefits of Nonsurgical Body Sculpting

Nonsurgical body sculpting is a safe procedure that also has several other advantages:

  • It requires no general anesthesia or incisions and leaves no scars.
  • It requires little or no downtime.
  • It produces few or no side effects.
  • It yields gradual results, so the treatment is discreet.
  • The results may last for as long as you maintain your ideal weight.
WebMD Medical Reference Reviewed by Melinda Ratini, DO, MS on July 07, 2021

Sources

SOURCES:

Aesthetic Surgery Journal: “The Evidence Behind Noninvasive Body Contouring Devices.”

American Board of Cosmetic Surgery: “Non-surgical Fat Reduction.”

American Society for Dermatologic Surgery: “Non-Invasive Body Contouring Treatments.”

American Society of Plastic Surgeons: “A variety of body contouring options offers customized treatments,” “Nonsurgical Fat Reduction,” “What is cryolipolysis.”

Harvard Health Publishing: “The skinny on freezing fat.”

International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery: “Body Contouring 101: Understanding Fat reduction vs. Weight Loss.”

Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery: “Cryolipolysis for Fat Reduction and Body Contouring: Safety and Efficacy of Current Treatment Paradigms.”

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