Have you ever noticed that women have far more cellulite than men? Sure estrogen and genetics play a small role in the dimple department, but the main reason we are plagued with puckering is due to the fibrotic bands that connect our skin and muscle. The bands are different for men than they are for women; men have thicker bands, more of them, and they run diagonally beneath the skin. Women’s thinner bands on the other hand run perpendicular beneath the skin. When peoples’ fat cells increase in volume, men’s bands, which form a mesh-like pattern, keep their fat in place. For women though, as their fat cells increase in size, the perpendicular bands stretch and thus pull down on the skin causing the dimpling. You see, cellulite is not a fat problem: it is a structural problem below the skin. Thankfully, there is finally an FDA approved treatment for cellulite reduction. Forget the topical creams and massages promising miracles. They do nothing to address the beneath the surface structural integrity of cellulite. Cellulaze attacks the very structure of cellulite. First, it delivers laser energy to the underlying aspect of the skin, the dermis, producing thicker skin and increased elasticity. It also thermally releases fibrotic bands that pull down on the skin. Lastly, this cellulite treatment contours for the improvement of herniated pockets or lumps of fat.
Am I a good candidate for cellulite treatment?
The best candidates for Cellulaze are healthy women who are not significantly overweight but have cellulite.
Patients may choose to have the Cellulaze cellulite treatment under local anesthesia combined with an oral sedative or under IV sedation. The duration of the procedure depends on the targeted treatment areas. Your plastic surgeon begins the procedure by making a tiny incision in which he will inject tumescent solution, a mixture of lidocaine and epinephrine to numb the area and to minimize bleeding. Next, your doctor will insert a very small cannula (or tube about the size of the tip of a pen) under the skin. A unique laser fiber inside the tube delivers energy directly under your skin and disrupts your underlying tissue, while simultaneously releasing the fibrous bands that pull down on your skin. Once these bands are released, the orange peel look associated with cellulite is diminished. Since the cellulite treatment incision is so small, there is no need to suture it.
You can expect to return home wearing a compression garment on the treated areas. This garment is vital to your recovery. Since the tissue under your skin was disrupted during the procedure, it needs to heal. By healing, we mean that as the tissue comes together, it forms collagen, which ultimately thickens the skin giving it a firmer, more toned appearance. Ergo, the objective is to wear the garment so that it can compress the area, and promote healing of the tissue. Another reason to wear your garment is to reduce swelling associated with your procedure. The swelling and bruising will typically last a week to two weeks, and is unique to each patient. Some patients hardly swell and bruise, while others have bruising that is more substantial. Bruising is a normal part of the procedure. It is important to take it easy right after having Cellulaze. You can resume your daily activities the next day within reason; do not do anything that will increase your heart rate or blood pressure as this can increase the amount of swelling and bruising. Keep in mind, when your heart rate goes up, you swell; the recovery objective is to reduce swelling, not encourage it. Other than that, you will continue to take your antibiotic that is given to all surgery patients and to take your pain medication as needed. You can ease more and more back into your workout routine with each passing week. It takes 6 months to see the final result of this cellulite treatment. It is important early in the recovery to not get discouraged as the results take time to be noticeable.
Terms to Know
Tumescent Solution – local anesthesia made up of a large volume of very diluted lidocaine and epinephrine, which causes the targeted tissue to become swollen and firm, or tumescent, and permits procedures to be performed on patients without the need for general anesthesia or IV sedation. Additionally, the use of tumescent solution results in less bruising and less down time.
Fibrotic Bands – membranes that divide two cavities or soft masses of tissue in an organism
Perpendicular – a straight line at an angle of 90° to a given line, plane, or surface
Frequently Asked Questions
How long do the cellulite treatment results last?
Since new collagen is formed in the areas treated with Cellulaze and the structures under the skin are altered—producing results that last. Currently, clinical studies have shown results can persist for one year or more. The procedure is relatively new so there is no long-term data at this time, however, a longer term result has shown promise.
I have tried everything to get rid of cellulite, how do I know Cellulaze really works?
Cellulaze is backed by two years of clinical research and cleared for use in the United States. Clinical data has proven Cellulaze treatments can increase the thickness of the skin by 25 – 30% and increase the skin’s elasticity by 29%. Thicker and more elastic skin helps to flatten and smooth the skin’s surface therefore improving the appearance of cellulite.
How many treatments are required to achieve the desired results?
Only one Cellulaze procedure is necessary to achieve the desired results. You will see minimal results initially, but final results will not be apparent for up to six months. Of course, there are exceptions to every rule, but unless there are very large areas that need to be treated, one cellulite treatment will provide improved results.