Surgical versus Nonsurgical Fat Reduction Treatments: What Works Best?

In this day and age, plastic surgery has become much more commonplace than it used to be. More and more women, and increasingly also men, are eager to give themselves a younger and more vital appearance by getting a little help from a plastic surgeon’s bag of tricks.

However, the word “surgery” still has a negative ring for many would-be patients. There are several reasons for this.

For one, there is the fear of pain. Secondly, there is the fear of possible stitches or other visible marks that might show you’ve had surgery. And lastly, there is the fear of embarrassment. We want to look young, but we don’t necessarily want everyone to know that we had “work” done to make it so.

Do any of the above arguments sound familiar to you? Allow us to set the record straight.

Is nonsurgical fat reduction really less painful than surgical fat reduction?

Fat reduction is the most common area where the virtues of nonsurgical vs surgical treatments are hotly debated. Nonsurgical fat reduction (also known as CoolSculpting) is a trendy new treatment many are tempted to try. What’s not to like about getting rid of your fat by simply having an external wand applied that freezes the fat without any needles or surgery?

The “surgical” alternative is liposuction. While it is classified as a surgical procedure, liposuction in its modern-day form does not require actual surgery in the truest sense of the word. With the discreet placement of a tiny cannula, your excess fat gets removed from your body with relative ease.

What’s interesting is that the nonsurgical fat reduction treatment, or fat freezing, isn’t really any more painless than the surgical alternative of liposuction. The application of cold to the skin can cause discomfort, while a local anesthetic applied during liposuction eases any potential discomfort.

The main difference between surgical and nonsurgical fat reduction is the length of treatment. CoolSculpting is typically administered in a series of repeat treatments several weeks apart, whereas liposuction is a one-time procedure in which all fat is permanently removed.

Does surgical fat reduction leave any permanent marks?

If it doesn’t cause any more pain then nonsurgical fat reduction, perhaps the problem with surgical fat reduction aka liposuction is that it requires stitches and leaves scars?

Wrong again. As we’ve said above, today’s liposuction techniques are administered via a tiny cannula that delivers gently pressurized water that breaks loose and flushes out your fat. The incisions to insert this cannula are so small that no stiches are required. Other liposuction methods using laser or radio frequency (RF) energy have a similar delivery method, none of which requires any stitches.

Whether you choose non-invasive fat freezing or minimally-invasive liposuction, you will not have to worry about any scars or marks from the procedure. The main difference between the two is how much time it takes and whether you want a one–time procedure vs repeat treatments.

Is having plastic surgery more embarrassing than having non-invasive treatments?

There might have been a time when this was true. But the time when you might whisper behind your hand that so-and-so must have had a facelift is long past. Nowadays, you’re more likely to be asked which surgeon did your breast implant surgery, and to share his contact details, than be shunned over having “fake” breasts.

In today’s world of plastic surgery, it’s not so much a matter of “surgical” vs “nonsurgical”. It’s about “it works” vs “I don’t see a difference” or “it takes too long.”

When it comes to fat reduction, what you really want is great results, as fast as possible, without pain. Liposuction checks all those boxes. It’s not invasive enough to need stitches or a long recovery, but it gets much better and more immediate results than a nonsurgical fat reduction treatment such as CoolSclupting.

We hope we have helped you gain a better understanding of your body contouring options. To find out a fat reduction treatment plan for you, contact NuBody Concepts to schedule a personal and confidential consultation.

Each patient is unique. What your treatment will look like is determined by you and the plastic surgeon who you will meet with in a personal consultation.