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"I would like to say it is ready to replace liposuction, but it's not -- yet," he says. Still it does have certain benefits over liposuction namely that a person can have the treatment and go to lunch afterward, Fodor says. Unlike liposuction, the new technology does not involve pain, scars, anesthesia, or a long recovery time. Only some topical anesthesia is used, he says.
*In the U.S., the CoolSculpting®procedure is FDA-cleared for the treatment of visible fat bulges in the submental area, thigh, abdomen and flank, along with bra fat, back fat, underneath the buttocks (also known as banana roll), and upper arm. It is also FDA-cleared to affect the appearance of lax tissue with submental area treatments. In China, the cryolipolysis system is used for fat layer reduction of the abdomen and flanks. In Taiwan, the CoolSculpting procedure is cleared for the breakdown of fat in the flank (love handle), abdomen, and thigh. Outside the U.S., China and Taiwan, the CoolSculpting procedure for non-invasive fat reduction is available worldwide. CoolSculpting® and its design are trademarks of ZELTIQ Aesthetics, Inc., an Allergan affiliate. CoolSculpting is the treatment doctors use most for non-invasive fat removal.
The most commonly known treatment is liposuction, a surgical procedure with inherent risks that many patients wish to avoid. Now, less invasive energy-based alternatives are available, including energy-assisted liposuction, which is usually gentler in comparison to regular liposuction. Recently, completely non-invasive treatments are showing up in the market but results are less predictable and less impressive.
CoolSculpting, launched in the US in 2010, is a technology-based system which basically freezes fat cells away. As discussed above, when we gain and lose weight, our fat cells basically grow and shrink, but our proportions pretty much stay the same. CoolSculpting is revolutionary in that it lets you target your stubborn fat with “spot treatment.” That means the fat comes off where you want it too. And for the first time, safe and effective spot reduction of fatty bulges can be performed noninvasively, and with no downtime.
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ASAPS formed an ad hoc committee to further investigate the pros and cons of mesotherapy, he says. "We don't know whether it works or not because it is used by a lot of people who inject all kinds of chemicals into the skin," Fodor explains. "Our committee looked at the literature and we found no uniformity to what is being used, how much is being injected, and where it is being injected, so we could not draw any conclusions," he says. That's why ASAPS is conducting a clinical trial at five centers to definitively answer questions about mesotherapy. "We will do some studies with an exact and rigid protocol so we can compare apples to apples, not apples to oranges," he says.