How Ultrasounds Disrupt Fat: Mechanism of Action
What is Ultrasound
Ultrasound is a cyclic sound pressure wave with a frequency greater than the upper limit of the human hearing range. Ultrasounds are utilized in many different fields including human medicine and body contouring! Ultrasonic Energy (ultrasounds) is successfully utilised in order to bring about fat cell lysis and here we will try to explain how this is feasible!
Ultrasonic energy can be delivered either in two different forms: Focused and Non Focused. While Non focused delivery can bring about damage in skin cells while a minimal amount of the energy will reach the fat cells, focused is the ideal method in terms of lipolysis.
Studies had been conducted in many mediums like gelatin models that simulate the human skin and finally at domestic male pigs (Sus scrofa domestica) with focused delivered Ultrasonic Energy and the results are visually observed by using techniques like Schlieren real-time imaging!The results shown in pigs are amazing. The non focused ultrasonic energy is proved not to cause any damage in the skin layer (dermis) while noticable cavitation (look at the pic below) was created in the fat cells (adipocytes) layer! Besides the damage in surrounding nerves and blood cells was almost non observbable!
Mechanism of Action
- The focused Ultrasound waves’ resonant frequency can bring about the creation of thousands of microscopic bubbles of air around the membranes of the fat cells. These bubbles cause high pressure round the cells!
- Observation on histological characteristics of the fat cells showed that what happens is an obvious alteration in fat cell tissue, a changing of tissue connecting fat cells, while an irregular arrangement of collagen fibers in this tissue takes place.
- This causes the breaking of the membrane and subsequently the destruction of these fat cells and the release of triglycerides and cholesterol.
- In addition its proved that this ultrasound energy is a signal for apoptosis (programmed cell death) of fat cells.
- The broken cells are either removed via suction or moved to the liver and are metabolised out of the body. This is why you should drink much water after an ultrasonic session!
Ultrasonic Liposuction is based on utilising ultrasounds the internal way (with a canula that enters through a small incision). Actually not all Ultrasonic Liposuction systems are FDA approved! The new generation of Ultrasonic Liposuction is much more sophisticated! A good example of that is Vaser Liposuction! There are also some non surgical techniques utilizing ultrasounds (like Liposonix Ultrasound)
The following video explains how ultrasound work in movin pics: