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Reduce flank fat without pain, downtime


Nonthermal pulsed ultrasound (UltraShape, Syneron Candela) treatments significantly reduce flank fat, without pain, downtime and apparent risks, according to a study.

Nonthermal pulsed ultrasound (UltraShape, Syneron Candela) treatments significantly reduce flank fat, without pain, downtime and apparent risks, according to a study presented at the April 2017 37th American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery (ASLMS) Annual Conference in San Diego.

Metairie, La., dermatologist W. Patrick Coleman, IV, M.D., presented a 16-week randomized, controlled study using nonthermal pulsed ultrasound treatment for fat thickness reduction in the flanks. He and his father William P. Coleman, III, M.D., clinical professor of dermatology and adjunct professor of surgery (plastic surgery) at Tulane University Health Sciences Center, New Orleans, conducted the study on 15 subjects, including nine females and six males.

Subjects had three biweekly 15- to 20-minute treatment sessions to unilateral flanks using a small transducer with single pass mode. Researchers monitored patients’ weight to make sure it remained consistent. They also measured and recorded the average of two consistent measurements of each flank. Patients rated treatment discomfort with zero being no pain and 10 being the worst possible pain.

They found fat thickness reduction on the treated flanks was a mean 15.1% at week four, 14.2% at week eight and 21.2% at week 16. Researchers also reported a mean 2.5-mm reduction in fat thickness at week 16 on the treated side.

Flank fat reduction on untreated flanks was insignificant, at less than 1.1% at 16 weeks.

Patients reported minimal to no discomfort during the three treatments, and researchers reported no adverse events with treatment.

And more than 70% of the subjects noticed fat reduction of the treated flank at study follow-ups.

“Non-surgical flank fat reduction was achieved safely, with no downtime and no apparent risks,” according to Dr. Coleman’s presentation.

Dr. Coleman says UltraShape works with oscillating high pressure, which induces selective destruction of the fat cell membranes. The effect is mechanical, with little rise in tissue temperature. 

Dr. Coleman conducted the study he presented using older UltraShape technology. Syneron Candela announced FDA clearance for the high energy UltraShape Power device for abdominal fat reduction in July 2016. UltraShape Power, according to a Syneron Medical press release, delivers 20% more energy than its predecessor and demonstrates a 32% reduction in abdominal fat layer thickness.

Disclosure: W. Patrick Coleman, IV, M.D., receives funding from Syneron Candela for meeting travel. Both Drs. Coleman have performed FDA clinical trials on UltraShape.

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