Hesitant about going under the knife? With these fat reduction treatment options, you won’t have to.
I have written quite a bit about CoolSculpting, which is the use of cooling for non-invasive fat reduction. But people like to have options. It could be due to cost concerns, time constraints, or simply because of personal preference. If fat freezing for fat reduction is not an option for them and invasive surgery is out, what other alternatives do they have that are safe, non-invasive, and effective?
Not many people know that the use of gentle heating through non-contact radio frequency (RF) is also backed by research for effective fat reduction. My preferred device for this is Vanquish. You can take a look at the comparison between Vanquish and CoolSculpting before speaking to your doctor on which is the most suitable treatment for you.
CoolSculpting or Vanquish for non-invasive fat reduction?
CoolSculpting and Vanquish can be done as a standalone treatment or they can be paired together in a treatment plan prescribed by a doctor. Whether your fat reduction treatment should be based on a single device (i.e. CoolSculping OR Vanquish) or a combination of both, will depend on your desired outcome and consultation with your doctor.
They are both no downtime fat reduction treatments, which allows you to go back to your routine immediately after treatment.
1. What is Vanquish?
Vanquish is a no-downtime, non-invasive treatment approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (US FDA) that uses the thermal energy of RF waves to destroy fat cells. It uses contactless, deep-tissue heating to remove fat in problematic areas.
This fat reduction treatment does not require a large amount of pinchable fat during treatment. The Vanquish device warms your skin, carefully bringing the subcutaneous adipose tissue to 40-42°c. This is the optimum temperature needed for fat reduction by apoptosis, or death, of fat cells. The dead fat cells are then passed out of your body naturally.
Studies have shown that the Vanquish fat reduction treatment is able to achieve the following after four treatments, one week apart:
– An average of 29% reduction of fat thickness.
– A 4-5 cm reduction of waist circumference.
Where can it treat?
– Flank (love handle)
What to expect during treatment?
You will be placed in a comfortable position on the treatment bed or seated in a comfortable position depending on your treatment area. The therapist will then place the Vanquish fat reduction applicator about 1 cm away from your treatment area.
During treatment, the therapist will tune the power to achieve the desired temperature of 40-42°c. Each treatment takes 30-45 mins depending on the area requiring fat reduction. During the process, you should feel a homogenous or even heating on your skin, not hot spots that are uncomfortable.
You can speed up the breakdown and removal of the dead fat cells by adding a X-Wave treatment to the Vanquish fat reduction treatment regime. X-wave is a pneumatic device that improves the clearance of fat. It also breaks up and loosens cellulite, smoothening the uneven appearance of the skin.
Both Vanquish and X-wave treatments should be relatively pain-free. Which is why I personally like the treatment.
The skin on the treated area may look flushed immediately after treatment. This will resolve within an hour or so. You will need four to six weekly sessions to see results, which are expected in about three month’s time.
2. What is CoolSculpting?
CoolSculpting is a non-surgical, no downtime fat reduction treatment approved by the US FDA. It uses the process of cryolipolysis to freeze and destroy unwanted fat cells. Once the fat cells are destroyed, your body’s inflammatory and healing responses then kick in. Special cells called macrophages engulf the damaged fat cells. The macrophages then transport the fat to the liver, and your body naturally disposes of it so they are gone for the long term.
According to studies, CoolSculpting removes 20-25% of fat cells in the treated area each time.
Where can it treat?
– Flank (love handles)
– Inner and outer thighs
– ‘Banana rolls’ (the pocket of fat just below our buttocks)
– Knee fat
– Double chin
– Bra fat
CoolSculpting takes 35-45 mins per session depending on the type of applicator used and the area requiring treatment. For instance, the CoolAdvantage applicator takes 35 mins whereas the CoolAdvantage Plus takes 45 mins.
At clinics that have multiple CoolSculpting machines, you can shorten your fat reduction treatment time further by having multiple areas treated at the same time. The “QuadSculpting” method, for instance, treats four areas simultaneously. With QuadSculpting, treatment time can be reduced by up to 85% when the CoolAdvantage applicators are used.
Not everyone is suitable for QuadSculpting, as it depends on the areas requiring treatment. Be sure to consult your doctor about your suitability. Watch this video on QuadSculpting for more information.
What to expect during treatment?
The doctor or your CoolSculpting consultant will first mark the area that requires treatment using a CoolSculpting template. This ensures the accurate placement of the CoolSculpting applicators. Gel pads are then applied to protect the skin during treatment.
Once the treatment cycle is complete, the clinic assistant will massage the treated area. This helps to break down the crystalised dead fat cells, which would be passed out by the body naturally.
Instead of a hand massage, you can also speed up the breakdown and removal of the dead fat cells with the X-Wave device.
You might experience redness, numbness, and soreness on the treated area. There is nothing to worry about, as this will resolve after a few days to one to two weeks’ time.
You can expect to see results in about three months’ time.