In the past, the only options for getting rid of stubborn unwanted fat was with surgery or liposuction. That required general anesthesia, scarring, risk of infection and lots of downtime. In the last several years there has been a revolution in technology that removes fat without surgery or downtime. How could this be possible? I have spent the last few months researching every device on the market– the physics, technical constraints, effectiveness, and cost. Vanquish ME is the best in class, and it is now available at Glow.
It turns out that you can freeze fat, heat fat and even blast it with high-intensity ultrasound and fat cells actually die and the fat inside them is excreted by your body. Technology has come a long way since the old machines that merely jiggle your fat.
Vanquish works by selectively heating the fat with radiofrequency waves. Because it uses heat, instead of cold or ultrasound, Vanquish ME also tightens the skin. The machine does not actually touch your body but is positioned about one centimeter away from the areas being treated. The RF array is tuned to your fat like a radio. Each treatment is 45 minutes and feels like a warm blanket wrapped around you. There is no downtime, although if the treatment is very successful, you will be sore in those areas of fat that are dying the fastest. Many people say that their clothing fits better by the third treatment. The body continues to eliminate the fat over 4 months after treatment. The treatment is usually 4 sessions, 1 week apart.
Although I evaluated many devices, the main one I considered, but decided against, is Coolsculpting– you may have heard of it– it is fairly well-known because the company that makes it does a lot of direct-to-consumer marketing. That device works by freezing the fat using applicator cups and a vacuum. Coolsculpting has several disadvantages when compared to Vanquish ME:
- You can only treat fat that can be sucked into the applicator cup– adjacent fat or less mobile fat cannot be treated. Thus, there is often a “shelfing” that occurs in the adjacent fat. Vanquish can treat all the fat, including belly, back, love handles, muffin top, and thighs.
- Coolsculpting does not tighten skin
- Pain in the freezing and thawing process
- Possible nerve damage– lasts weeks-months if it occurs
- Does not work well on legs
- Higher cost (both for the patient and for the clinic)
- Ethical issues with the company, Zeltiq (this one is on here because I spoke with several people who have Coolsculpting, who have issues with the company’s tactics). I spoke with many practitioners who are using Vanquish ME who not only are getting great results with the device but are very happy about the parent company BTL.
The only advantage to Coolsculpting is that they do have a small cup that can treat chin fat. Vanquish ME cannot treat chin fat. For the chin, we do have Kybella for melting fat and Infini for tightening the neck, so this feature didn’t make up for the shortcomings.
At Glow, we are using Vanquish ME in combination with another device, Exilis Elite. Many people who are looking to burn fat also have loose skin in the same area. Exilis Ultra can be integrated into Vanquish treatments to reduce fat and markedly tighten skin at the same time. It is the perfect combination for the mommy belly or for people who have lost weight and now would like to treat the residual fat and loose skin.