“Surgical Vs. Non-Surgical Treatments For Cellulite” by Dr. Samuel Bledsoe
by Dr. Samuel Bledsoe
If you’ve been researching solutions for cellulite, there’s no doubt you’ve come across numerous treatments and heard various claims about their ability to reduce the appearance of those stubborn, embarrassing dimples on your butt, hips and thighs.
When it all boils down, you have three basic options. You can buy expensive creams, pills and wraps (which are almost guaranteed to disappoint), you can opt for a professional, non-surgical treatment, or you can choose to undergo a minimally invasive procedure. The difference between the two latter options, which this article will explore, are in the number of treatments you’ll need and the results you can realistically expect.
First, let’s talk about what cellulite is. You’re seeing ugly lumps and bumps because a superficial layer of fat is being squeezed between fibrous bands that pull down on the skin. Each of the professional treatments you’ve been considering effectively reduce the amount of fat cells that exists there, subsequently reducing the pressure on the skin and lessening the appearance of cellulite.
Non-Surgical Cellulite Treatments
Among the most popular topical treatments specifically used to banish cellulite are VelaSmooth and CoolSculpting. Each non-invasive method deteriorates the fat cells under your skin, allowing them to be absorbed by your body and expelled naturally. However, these treatments do differ in their primary technology.
VelaSmooth employs “elos” technology, or electrical-optical synergy. This combines infrared light and bipolar radio frequency to heat and rupture the superficial layer of fat under your skin, and a suction device to reshape and contour your areas of choice. The process encourages the flow of oxygen into the fat cells, which helps your body to metabolize them. As a result, the cellulite you’ve been cursing is diminished, giving you smoother, tighter skin.
VelaSmooth is a painless and uncomplicated treatment, with very little downtime needed afterward. The initial treatment, which can last between 30-45 minutes, should provide noticeably smoother skin, however better results will be seen after about four treatments conducted twice a week. For the utmost satisfaction with VelaSmooth, a total of ten session and continued monthly treatments may be required.
This approach uses Cryolipolysis to freeze your fat cells as opposed to melting them away. A cooling suction device crystallizes the targeted tissue, demolishing your fat cells and allowing your body to absorb and metabolize them. This takes anywhere between one and three hours depending on the areas being treated, and is virtually pain-free, if not pleasant. No anesthesia is required and recovery time is extremely quick. In fact, with most non-surgical cellulite treatments you can get back to your routine the same day.
With CoolSculpting you will need to have multiple treatments over the course of a few months. The average fat reduction is about 20-25%, and should be permanent as long as you maintain a healthy diet and exercise routine to keep the fat from returning. For some, a maintenance treatment every three to four months helps to retain results.
Surgical Cellulite Removal
Another way to get rid of unsightly cellulite is to undergo a minimally invasive surgical procedure. While other treatments have fewer risks, opting for surgery has proven to be most efficient and effective.
While you are comfortably under local anesthesia, your surgeon will make a tiny incision and insert a “microcannula” or very thin tube into the fatty tissue of the target area. Using a specialized laser, the fat cells are painlessly heated and liquefied. Unlike similar liposuction procedures, the melted fat is allowed to absorb into the body metabolize rather than being sucked out. Meanwhile, the fibrous bands that pull in the skin and contribute to cellulite are released— which is a technique unique to Cellulaze. Then, the heat from the laser promotes the development of collagen, ultimately giving your skin more firmness and elasticity.
You may experience very minor post-op swelling, soreness, or bruising, but you should be able to resume your regular activities within a day or two. Your permanent results will be evident after just one treatment, and the look of your skin will continue to improve over a period of three months to a year— without the need for additional treatments. Keep in mind, however, that because this is a surgery, it is in your best interest to find a licensed, qualified plastic surgeon who can ensure your absolute safety.
Although Cellulaze is typically more expensive than individual non-surgical cellulite treatments, this minimally-invasive removal method has established itself as much more effective option. And, given that several ongoing treatments are frequently necessary with topical treatments, the costs can actually even out. Cellulaze also has far better patient reviews than any non-invasive cellulite treatment.
With that, if you are truly determined to get rid of your cellulite once and for all, a surgical treatment like Cellulaze will give you longer-lasting, more satisfying results.