How cool is this: the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) laboratory that invented cryolipolisis or "Coolsculpting," a popular non-surgical method for reducing fat under the skin, is developing a new form of the technology that can selectively reduce fat almost anywhere in the body using a safe, injectable ice solution or "slurry."
The technology, not yet approved for use in humans, is designed for removal of fat in the abdomen or other parts of the body - virtually anywhere that can be reached with a hypodermic needle. Fat is a normal part of our bodies, but in excess or with some diseases can be life-threatening.
The new technique is described in a paper published online ahead of print in the journal Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery . As one of the reviewers of the paper said, "this treatment has the potential to become one of the most performed cosmetic procedures in plastic surgery practice."
The appeal of this technique is that it's easy and convenient to do. With Coolsculpting, which is a topical cooling technique, the patient has to sit there for almost an hour for enough heat to diffuse from the fat underneath the skin. With this new technique the doctor can do a simple injection that takes just less than a minute, the patient can go home, and then the fat gradually disappears. Lead author Lilit Garibyan, MD, PhD, investigator in the Wellman Center for Photomedicine at MGH and the Department of Dermatology at Harvard Medical School
Cryolipolysis is currently the leading non-invasive fat removal technology because of its minor side effects and non-invasive nature. The Coolsculpting method is limited, however, by the amount of fat that can be removed per treatment, and is not practical for reaching more deeply seated fat surrounding organs or other body structures. Related Stories
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