Many people attempt to lose weight and banish “problem areas” of fat for months or even years without much luck. They may find themselves in a vicious cycle of crash dieting and falling back on a workout plan that doesn’t produce the desired results. While healthy lifestyle choices are important for fat loss and body contouring, other factors can also contribute to excess weight. Hormone levels, a slow metabolism, and stubborn pockets of fat make it difficult to sculpt the body without a little help. Fortunately, people who struggle with stubborn fat now have several different options to help them achieve their body contouring goals. Liposuction and minimally-invasive fat reduction treatments can be the perfect solution to areas of isolated fat. Premier Image Cosmetic & Laser Surgery in the Atlanta, GA area offers body contouring to permanently remove unwanted fat in the body.
Traditional and Heat-Based Body Contouring Explained
Liposuction (surgical fat removal) has remained a popular procedure because it effectively reduces the amount of fat in the body, suctioning it out from under the skin. This process offers an instant slimming in the treated areas. During the procedure, small incisions are created as access points for the cannula (small hollow tube) to break up and remove extra fat. There are different versions of the procedure, including tumescent liposuction and VASER liposuction. Tumescent liposuction is performed in a two-part procedure, where the area is numbed and injected with a medicated fluid to cause treated fat to become firm and easy to work with. Not only is the fat easier to remove, but this type of liposuction constricts the blood vessels so bleeding and bruising are more controlled. VASER assisted liposuction adds an additional step to the tumescent process, utilizing a specialized cannula to liquefy the fat through ultrasound technology, and vacuum the tissue away. This liposuction method can address smaller areas like the neck and breasts and can be customized into a lunchtime lipo procedure for the fastest healing time and least amount of disruption to one’s daily life.
While liposuction uses a cannula to suction extra area fat away, Vanquish provides a very different type of fat removal. Using radio frequency technology, the device heats deep tissue below the skin below the dermis, or deepest layer or skin. The penetration through this layer is seamless, allowing the heat to pass through the skin and damage specific targeted fat cells. The skin, muscle, and other tissues are unharmed during this controlled procedure, and the fat is heated to approximately 120 degrees Fahrenheit, effectively melting it away so the body can dispose of it naturally. Some fat will still remain in the area, which is necessary for the body’s normal functions, serving as a protective mechanism for organs as well as an internal source of insulation to maintain body heat. This type of fat also serves as a nutrients reserve.
How is the Body Contouring Treatment Performed?
During surgical fat removal, the patient is first placed under local anesthesia with sedation or general anesthesia. Once the areas have been sufficiently numbed and the patient is in a relaxed or controlled resting state, the doctor will make tiny incisions near areas to be treated. The surgical cuts are very small and easily camouflaged in folds of the skin. Next, the tumescent fluid is distributed to the fatty layers below the skin, which helps to control blood loss and discomfort. Then, the cannula is inserted below the skin to break up fat and permanently remove it from the area using suction. Drains may be placed in the different surgery sites, and compression garments will be fitted over the patient’s body to help contour the region and minimize area swelling. Generally, one surgery is all that is needed to reach a patient’s desired silhouette.
Vanquish is safely performed as an in-office treatment regimen, which takes place over the course of a month. Most patients are prescribed 4 sessions that they undergo each week, requiring just 30 minutes per appointment. During Vanquish, the patient is situated on an office bed, lying down. An apparatus containing an arm with adjustable panels is fitted about half an inch from the skin over the patient’s problem areas, like the abdomen, lower back, and flanks or love handles. The device contains sensors that assess the fat in the area, delivering a specific amount of heat energy accordingly.
Treatment Results – Reducing Inches
Neither liposuction nor Vanquish are intended for weight loss, though patients tend to drop a few pounds from the fat loss. The procedures achieve results in patients who are already healthy but may have a few extra inches of fat padding their frames. In some cases, liposuction patients may lose about 2-4 inches of fat, whereas those who undergo Vanquish are more likely to see improvement of 1-3 inches.
Liposuction patients will wake up from surgery slimmer than before, however, some initial swelling can make noticeable differences difficult for the new few weeks. It may be a few months until all residual swelling subsides. This type of body contouring requires lengthier healing times, but overall may provide more dramatic results.
Vanquish has been studied by BTL Aesthetics, who conducted a study featuring 25 female participants, and results found that after just one treatment, there were visible results. After all 4 treatments were finished, the average patient noticed a 59% reduction in abdominal fat, which slimmed the waistline by 2-3 inches. The Atlanta area-based practice, Premier Image Cosmetic & Laser Surgery has researched a number of non-invasive, fat-eliminating treatments and discovered Vanquish produced superior results.
Other Types of Non-Invasive Fat Removal
Some patients are familiar with cryolipolysis, which is another non-surgical method for fat removal, but fat is treated by a freezing of the cells rather than heating them. Provided under the brand name CoolSculpting, this method of fat removal is also administered in the office setting. Each session requires about two hours to complete, during which a device placed directly on the skin, and suctions the tissue to gain access to the fat cells, effectively freezing them. The treated tissue appears slightly red and is then massaged for best results. Over time, the body naturally eliminated the cells affecting by the cooling.
By comparing the two methods, Vanquish appears to provide more uniform fat loss, faster results, and more aesthetic change in treated areas, with a 59% reduction in fat versus 20-22% that can be achieved through CoolSculpting.
Are the Results of Body Contouring Permanent?
Both liposuction and Vanquish permanently rid the body of fat cells and will help patients maintain their weight. Fat cells don’t multiply like others in the human body, but rather change in size with weight gain. While adding on the pounds can expand one’s problem areas, there will be fewer cells left to become enlarged, making liposuction and Vanquish long term solutions.
Patients should continue to eat healthy diets and exercise regularly to stay fit and maintain results.
Those best suited to undergo both surgical and non-surgical fat removal are people who have been able to maintain their weight for some time. If a person tends to gain and lose pounds regularly, then they may not see the benefit produced by these treatments.
Because cosmetic fat reduction procedures are not a substitute for weight loss and may not provide specific medical benefits, patients should be a healthy weight prior to undergoing the sessions. Generally, losing a few inches of fat will not change the other ways that storing extra bulk affects the body.
In addition to being in good health, body contouring patients should also be prepared to make healthy lifestyle choices after the procedure. Bad eating habits and a lack of physical movement can impact a person’s wellbeing, and the results of the procedure.
Lastly, those seeking non-surgical cosmetic fat removal should be adults beyond age 20, as this is when fat cells are stable in the body and show no more increase in number.
Because liposuction requires anesthesia and is a more invasive procedure, some patients with health concerns may be better suited to undergo Vanquish for comparable results. Candidacy and any patient questions will be addressed during the in-person consultation.
FAQs – All About Body Contouring
Traditional liposuction, tumescent liposuction, and VASER assisted liposuction are the available options for patients of the practice. Liposuction is performed by local access of a cannula, or metal suctioning device to remove unwanted fat from the body. When performed with a tumescent fluid, the regions to be treated are first treated with a fluid that minimized discomfort, constricts blood vessels, and turns the fat into a semi-solid state for removal. VASER assisted liposuction, sometimes referred to as VASER LipoSelection, is a newer method of surgical fat removal that combines tumescent liposuction with the thermal energy of ultrasound technology, which turns the fat into a liquid, effectively destroying it.
The device slightly elevates the other tissues in the area, increasing their heat to 104-105 degrees Fahrenheit. The cells are not affected at this temperature so they will not be harmed during Vanquish fat-removal treatments. Patients can feel a warm sensation while the machine does its work, but it is not uncomfortable or painful, and likened to standing near a radiator. After a treatment session, common side effects can include mild redness and tenderness of the tissues, which usually fade in about an hour post-procedure. There is no downtime and patients can resume normal activities immediately. Since the procedure is non-invasive (meaning no incisions), there is no healing time.
Liposuction is performed for more dramatic fat loss results and can target areas from the neck and chin to the midsection and even the buttocks and thighs. Nearly anywhere that fat accumulates, liposuction can successfully slim the area.
Vanquish is an ideal procedure for those seeking a non-surgical option to sculpt certain areas of the body, like the waistline, love handles, and back. Liposuction treats more areas on the body, but carries higher risks, like bleeding or infection. There is also a longer, and more involved recovery period. The convenience and effectiveness of Vanquish provides patients with another option to improving the silhouette of the midsection of their body and can also cater to those seeking non-surgical treatment options. Results are similar between the procedures, but generally liposuction will reduce fatty areas more dramatically.
Premier Image offers various options for body contouring, designed for a wide array of patient concerns. Liposuction can be delivered with add-on benefits, like tumescent injections and VASER ultrasound energy to create the best results possible. The surgeries can be completely customized for each patient to address all areas of concern.
Additionally, the practice is the first in Atlanta to offer the newest fat reducer – Vanquish. Vanquish is a non-invasive fat reducing method that utilizes a focus field radio frequency device. The doctors at Premier Image are dedicating to providing their patient base with the latest technology and clinically proven methods in aesthetic medicine.
The Vanquish fat-removal treatment delivers energy to fat based on the fact that it resists the flow of the energy through its tissue, and therefore traps heat within the area. Through sensors, the energy is continuously adjusted throughout the procedure to maintain a uniform heating of the tissue. After the fat cells reach a specific temperature, they fragment and are eliminated from the body.
About Premiere Image Cosmetic & Laser Surgery – Sandy Springs, GA
The Atlanta-area office specializes in elective procedures to improve patients’ self-confidence. With state-of-the art equipment, Premier Image meets the gold standard for care in cosmetic medicine.
Contact the professional staff by calling 770-457-6303, or fill out the site’s Contact form to email the office with the procedure you’re interested in. The doctors are now accepting new patients, and regularly feature new patient specials.