What You Should Know About Non-Invasive vs Minimally-Invasive Fat Removal
“I just want that FAT GONE!”
Have you ever found yourself saying those words to the mirror in your bathroom? If not, congratulations. You are one of the select few. But if you have, keep reading.
Fat Freezing and Other Fat Removal Techniques
In this day and age, there are a lot of treatments that promise to make your fat go away. You can laser it, heat it, freeze it, even wrap a block of ice around your waist. A procedure called CoolSculpting – or cryolipolysis by its scientific name – uses a machine to freeze targeted pockets of fat. This aims to kill the fat cells directly under your skin, which your body then naturally removes over the coming months.
On the surface this makes a lot of sense. The added bonus of cryolipolysis is its non-invasive nature. It involves no surgery of any kind.
But let’s remember for a moment what you were telling your mirror just a few minutes earlier. You wanted your fat GONE, right? While CoolSculpting does target your unwanted fat, it doesn’t actually get rid of it for you. You walk out of that office after your treatment with the same exact amount of fat you walked in with. It’s also not a one-time procedure. You almost certainly have to go back for a repeat treatment, and most likely one or two more after that, to see any difference.
Another popular new treatment is UltraShape. Instead of freezing your fat away, it promises to destroy body fat in a series of treatments using ultrasound technology. Unlike fat freezing, which can be quite painful, this is advertised as virtually painless.
Water Liposuction: The One-Shot Deal to Have Fat Gone
Noninvasive fat reduction or nonsurgical fat reduction like the above methods sounds like a great idea in principle. But you should be aware of the tradeoff. Yes, you get a nonsurgical procedure without incisions, anesthetics, or recovery time. But do you get the one thing you’ve repeatedly said you want – your FAT GONE?
There is an ongoing debate about how soon and how well CoolSculpting or UltaShape help you get rid of your unwanted fat. But while the jury is still out on that, it is well-established that one procedure DOES offer fat removal in a one-shot deal. That procedure is liposuction. It may sound less fancy and less fashionable than these newer trends. But it always has and still does get the job done the best.
But wait, how about the incisions, the anesthetics, the recovery time – I don’t want any of that, do I?
Well, let’s look at these one by one.
What Does Minimally-Invasive Mean?
Incisions: Liposuction has come a long way and isn’t nearly as invasive as it once was. With Water Liposuction – better known by its brand name Aqualipo – your doctor inserts a tiny cannula under your skin. Water pulsing through that cannula gently flushes your fat cells away and into a separate container. You can actually SEE them leaving your body. The cannula is so small that the incisions are very small and don’t need any stitches to heal.
Anesthesia: During water liposuction, a local anesthetic is added to the water flushing out your fat to numb the area. There is no need to put you under, no general anesthesia, no added risk. If you go in to have your fat frozen without anesthesia, it is very likely to be more painful than liposuction.
Recovery time: Most water liposuction patients need about 2 days to recover and get back to their daily activities. Some even return to work the next day. While this is still longer than no recovery at all after, say, your CoolSculpting treatment, remember the huge upside of that little bit of recovery. You will have walked out of that doctor’s office with the one thing you wanted to accomplish all along: Your FAT GONE!