Board Certified Chicago Plastic & Cosmetic Surgeon, Dr. Sam Speron is widely recognized as an expert on Chicago laser cellulite reduction. Cellulite lasers are the newest technology to attack the unsightly look of cellulite.
What is Cellulite?
Cellulite is a common term used to describe superficial pockets of trapped fat, which cause uneven dimpling or “orange peel” skin. Common (but not exclusive areas where cellulite is found) are the thighs, buttocks and the abdomen. Contrary to popular belief, cellulite is not related to obesity, since it occurs in overweight, normal and even thin women. It is estimated that 80% of all women over the age of 20 have cellulite!
Most women to some degree are bothered by cellulite. Cellulite is a condition that gives the skin a dimpled appearance. Cellulite is usually most prevalent in the thigh, hip and buttock areas. Patients consulting with board-certified plastic surgeons for body contouring frequently ask what can be done to reduce the appearance of cellulite. Currently, there is no ideal cellulite treatment.
“Cellulite is caused by bands of fibrous tissue that connect the muscle to the skin,” says Dr. Sam Speron, body contouring expert and consumer advocate. “If these bands are tight and the fat between the muscle and the skin is compressed, there will be dimpling. Almost all women and even some men have cellulite. Cellulite stems from genetic predisposition, hormonal changes and weight gain. Patients need to understand that cellulite can be improved, but not removed!”
Various treatments have emerged over time claiming to “treat” cellulite.
VelaSmooth™ is one of the many medical devices touted to improve cellulite. I like the Syneron technology because it includes the revolutionary elos combined energy technology (using Bi-Polar Radio Frequency and Infrared Light) plus tissue mobilization combined with suction to reduce the appearance of cellulite. Suction manipulates and smoothes out the skin to facilitate safe and efficient energy delivery.cellulite_files
Two Energies are Better Than One: Safely and effectively re-contour the skin surface; the VelaSmooth is a relaxing, clinically proven, effective solution for cellulite
While the current crop of products claiming to reduce or eliminate cellulite is rapidly increasing, research regarding their efficacy remains at a bare minimum. These products can be rubbed into the skin to improve your skin tone and “melt away fat” to reduce cellulite or at least the “look of cellulite”. Caffeine is the most popular ingredient in cellulite creams because it is a stimulant and contains amounts of Theophylline, which is a Bronchodilator (these open the lung passageways). There are no studies to prove that Caffeine truly gets rid of cellulite, though those that choose to see what the eye wants to see, believe Cellulite creams containing Caffeine do reduce the visible appearance of cellulite.
Others have tried using Retinols or AHAs to improve the “texture” of the skin to lessen the appearance of cellulite. These ingredients seem to be more logical to use because of their ability to enhance cell turnover on the skin’s surface. It may also prove less expensive to use AHAs or Retinols on the skin, rather than an overpriced cellulite cream claiming to erase ALL cellulite.
Concentrating on Exercise and a diet rich in Fiber, Fruits and Vegetables will help reduce the appearance of cellulite. Exercise increases blood circulation and helps you sweat out toxins your body produces. Exercise helps build muscle tone and reduces your body fat and gives you endurance and energy. Drinking lots of water flushes your body of toxins and cleans out your system. Eating a diet high in fiber helps clean out your arteries. Fiber can be found in Fruits and vegetables which also contain amounts of water to help flush your system. Diets high in fat not only block the arteries, but allows fat to get stuck in the connective tissues. Diets high in salt increase water retention and cause your body to feel bloated. In short, be careful of thinking there is a magic cream that will eliminate cellulite. Minimal improvement at best is all you should expect. Any improvement you get usually goes away once you stop using the product. Of all the cellulite and firming lotions on the market today, neaclear Liquid Oxygen Firming Body Lotion seems to make the most sense.
Endermologie and Cellulite?
Endermologie is a non-surgical procedure used to stimulate the breakdown of fat and cellulite. Endermologie is a machine that uses light suction and pressure to massage the areas where cellulite is visible. This is an on-going treatment that may never give the results you desire. If you are not maintaining a healthy lifestyle, exercise and healthy diet, you will see little improvement. This treatment can become costly due to the amount of cellulite and results desired from a few monthly sessions. Endermologie is an on-going treatment that always requires “maintenance” treatments. Any effect you get usually goes away once you stop treatments. Most studies do notfavor using Endermologie because of lack of results and this fad seems to have hit its peak around 1998-2000.
Syneron laser cellulite reduction is a simple non-surgical procedure used to stimulate the breakdown of fat and cellulite. This is an on-going treatment that may never give the results you desire. Usually 4-8 treatments are recommended. If you are not maintaining a healthy lifestyle, exercise and healthy diet, you will see little improvement. While Laser cellulite reduction has no downtime, it is an on-going treatment that usually requires “maintenance” treatments. A more dramatic difference can be achieved with a small office procedure to release the skin. This can be done alone or in combination with a filler injection. Alternatively, fat injection and liposuction or even body lifting surgery can further improve cellulite.
To summarize, current available cellulite treatment options:
• Laser Cellulite Reduction: Laser Cellulite Reduction does improve the appearance of cellulite by itself. However, the issue is always how much? Most surgeons think that you can assume a 10-20% correction but the problem is always that patients have a difficult time noticing this small a change. This approach can be combined with many other modalities including a small office procedure to release the skin. This can be done alone or in combination with a filler injection.
• Liposuction: Lipoplasty (commonly known as liposuction) does not reduce cellulite by itself. Some surgeons, however, have reported performing a technique of cellulite lysing (breaking up) using a liposuction cannula (hollow tube powered by gas or electricity) that features a smooth, round-tipped tunneling rod inserted in a hollow casing with a sharp, V-pronged cutting edge. The tunneling rod assures passage under the skin to the area to be broken up, while the curette fork (loop shaped surgical instrument) extends at the tip to sever only the dimple-causing connective tissue system. The area that is released can then be injected with fat to fill the space. This technique does improve the appearance of cellulite.
• Fat Injections: Autologous fat harvested from donor sites in the abdomen and flank areas may fill in depressions. Again, this is more successful if a release is performed at the same time. However, the results of fat injections may not be permanent.
• Lower Body Lift: This procedure evolved from one called “Cellulite Lift.” The technique was designed to replace the thigh/buttock lift, a procedure that works well for some patients but may produce scars that are visible when wearing a bathing suit. The lower body lift requires an incision around the entire circumference of the abdominal and buttock area, so that excess skin can be removed and the entire flank, thigh and buttocks areas can be lifted. The incision can usually be placed discreetly within standard or high-cut bikini lines. The result of the procedure is tightening of the back, flank and abdominal tissues, and reduction in the appearance of cellulite in the lifted areas. The lower body lift is a major surgical procedure that requires a lengthy recovery and leaves an extensive, though well-positioned, scar. For this reason, it requires especially careful patient selection and, as with all cosmetic surgery, the patient's full informed consent.
• Endermologie: This mechanical roller massage therapy has been proposed as a treatment for cellulite and as an adjunct to liposuction. Treatments may produce temporary improvement in the appearance of cellulite, but long-term results of this noninvasive therapy have not been established, either clinically or scientifically. According to a 2001 study published in Aesthetic Surgery Journal, ASAPS' peer-reviewed publication, Endermologie in and of itself has not been found to be beneficial for producing long-term and lasting clinical results.
• Mesotherapy: Small amounts of homeopathic medicine are injected immediately beneath the surface of the skin to break down the cellulite and to improve circulation and lymphatic and venous drainage. Currently, there are no peer-reviewed articles or scientific studies to back up claims that mesotherapy improves the appearance of cellulite. Mesotherapy is not FDA approved
• Herbal and dietary supplements: Some makers of herbal and dietary supplements claim to cure what they say are the internal causes of cellulite, such as poor circulation, slow metabolism, and bloating. Since supplements are not regulated by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) unless they are marketed as a cure for a disease or a medical condition, some companies market supplements with claims that are unsubstantiated by scientific studies. Until reliable data is provided concerning any herbal or dietary supplement, consumers should be skeptical of claims and should also be aware that many such supplements carry risks.
• Creams and lotions: “Miracle” creams and lotions are frequently marketed with claims of diminishing the unsightly dimpling of cellulite. These topical “cures” contain a variety of active ingredients including, but not limited, to: caffeine, green tea, plant extracts, retinol, aminophylline (an asthma drug), and the antioxidant DMAE. Most creams may mask cellulite temporarily by hydrating and swelling the skin and for most, there is no science to back up their long-term efficacy. One of the most exciting new creams for cellulite correction is neaclear’s firming body lotion. The combination of liquid oxygen, vitamin C, vitamin E and coenzyme Q10 makes a lot of sense!
Conclusion: Although some treatments may provide temporary improvement in the dimpled appearance of cellulite, to date there is no proven, permanent “cure” for cellulite.
Dr. Sam Speron is a Chicago Laser Cellulite Reduction and is widely recognized by the media as a leading expert on Chicago plastic surgery and Chicago cosmetic surgery. Dr. Speron is a Chicago Plastic Surgeon and proud member of both the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) and the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (ASAPS). Dr. Speron is Board-Certified with the American Board of Plastic Surgery