The Cost of Body Contouring Treatments and Procedures
Body Contouring Procedures
By Chelsea Spatz
Body contouring involves sculpting the body in order to reduce areas of fat and improve the tone and shape of the body. Body contouring procedures can include invasive or non-invasive procedures depending on the patient’s desired outcome and range in cost and recovery time.
a. Invasive Procedures
Invasive body contouring procedures refer to those that involve incisions by a surgeon. These procedures generally require the use of anesthesia and necessitate downtime for the incision sites to heal. Invasive body contouring procedures are ideal for patients seeking a more dramatic or significant change to their appearance.
Liposuction is a surgical procedure that removes fat deposits from various areas of the body, such as the abdomen, buttocks, hips, thighs, and others. During a liposuction surgery, a sterile solution of saline and lidocaine is injected into the area of fat removal to make vacuuming out the fat easier and less painful. The fat is then suctioned out from underneath the skin with a thin tube called a cannula. This procedure is performed under general or local anesthesia. Recovery time is approximately 2-4 weeks and the average cost of a liposuction is $1,500- $3,000.
Laser Assisted Liposuction
Laser assisted liposuction with treatments like SmartLipo harness the power of laser technology to liquify the fat for easier suctioning. Unlike traditional liposuction, this procedure is minimally invasive and only requires local anesthesia. Pain, swelling, bruising, and recovery time are significantly less, and downtime is usually only 1-3 days. Laser assisted liposuction is ideal for smaller areas of fat accumulation like under the chin or the upper arms, but can also be used in larger areas as well. Cost for SmartLipo ranges between $1,500 - $7500 depending on what area of the body is treated.
b. Noninvasive Treatments
Noninvasive body contouring refers to procedures that do not require incisions. These treatments are ideal for patients who do not have large areas of fat, but rather have small areas of fat that do not respond to diet or exercise. Because no incisions are made, patients do not require anesthesia or recovery time and can resume normal activity almost immediately.
CoolSculpting uses controlled cooling to target fat cells in different areas of the body and destroys these cells with a process called cryolipolysis. After some time, frozen fat cells die and are flushed out of the body through the lymphatic system. Patients typically seek treatment for the upper arms, back, abdomen, and flank area. This quick procedure takes about 20-30 minutes and, aside from some mild cold discomfort, is painless. Patients may require several treatments to achieve desired results. The average cost for Coolsculpting is $2,400.
SculpSure uses targeted heating to destroy fat cells and thus removes unwanted fat in the abdominal area and flanks. When the deep tissue of the skin is heated, the fat cells die and are then absorbed into the body in the weeks following treatment. The innovative device allows the practitioner to deliver the heat technology to the targeted area without burning the patient or damaging skin tissue. Results are permanent, though multiple sessions may be needed to achieve optimal results. Treatment sessions are 25 minutes long and cost an average of $2,200.
UltraShape Poweris a body contouring treatment that uses sound waves to target and destroy fat cells, and is a popular treatment for the abdomen area. Treatment sessions are about one hour long, and although relatively painless, some patients may experience a warming or tingling feeling and some bruising may occur. Results can be seen in 10 days - 2 weeks, and patients typically undergo three sessions total. The average cost for one UltraShape treatment is $1,500.
EmSculpt is a treatment that helps to define and tone muscle while also reducing fat. EmSculpt uses high-intensity electromagnetic energy to target areas of low muscle tone or stubborn fat (such as the buttocks, arms, and abdomen) to stimulate thousands of muscle contractions per minute, building muscle and burning fat. The result is a tighter, firmer, and more toned appearance that would take countless hours in the gym to achieve. The procedure lasts 30 minutes and the average cost is $3,500.