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HIFU Used to Lose LBS

April 6, 2010
Written by: , Filed in: Practice Management
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A preliminary study has found a new way to utilize HIFU: a noninvasive method to remove unwanted fat.

“The HIFU device used in the study includes an ultrasound transducer that emits a variable energy field capable of producing temperatures of 133 degrees Farenheit and higher in one second,” as quoted from an article by Charles Bankhead in MedPage Today.

“The rapid heating results in near-instantaneous coagulative necrosis, the investigators stated. Additionally, the device has an automated motion system that allows precise delivery of the ultrasound energy without excessive overlap of the treatment area,” the article continued.

Reported by Ernesto Gadsden, MD, and his colleagues of Hospital Torre Medica in Mexico City, the results of the small preliminary study were presented in the particularly appropriate venue of Miami Beach, at the recent American Academy of Dermatology meeting.

“Dr. Gadsden reported, ‘HIFU-treated adipose tissue is efficiently removed by normal inflammatory mechanisms and does not produce any acute or long-term local or systemic metabolic adverse affects.”

Only the targeted excess subcutaneous fat was affected, and, after two to three months, the adipose tissue was resorbed. Surrounding tissue or fascia were not damaged, no serious side effects were reported, and patients complained of only temporary discomfort.

Of the 19 healthy, female participants, 16 were treated with one of five HIFU energy levels in single treatment sessions. Three women were treated with one or two HIFU energy levels in two different sessions four weeks apart. With follow-ups within the first five days, then at 28 days and again at 56 days after treatment, the researchers saw that all the patients had accomplished abdominoplasty, usually taking place one to 18 weeks after their treatments.

“Histologic examination of tissue specimens showed well-demarcated adipocyte disruption, the investigators reported. They observed evidence of a normal inflammatory response, and phagocytosis of released lipids occurred 14 to 28 days after treatment. Healing progressed without incident in all patients,” according to the article.

Related seminar: Imaging Review: Body, Bone & Breast


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