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Liposuction and Cellulite



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Cellulite is a unique problem. Because liposuction only removes fat cells, there is not a guarantee that the cellulite is going to be completely corrected. Cellulite is not a problem necessarily of excess fat, as it can be prevalent even in healthy and underweight people. The problem with cellulite is more common in women than men, because women tend to have a tighter collagen mesh pattern beneath their skin.  It has been stated that 90 percent of all women have some form of cellulite. The main cause of cellulite has been attributed to the weakening of tiny blood and lymph drainage vessels that help our body with a fresh supply of nutrients to the tissues.

The fat cells in our body can expand so much that they cause the collagen fibers around them to bend causing puckering of the skin above. There is three layers of fat in the human body. Cellulite is located in the layer of fat closest to the skin. These fat cells are enclosed in pockets which is formed by collagen fibers.




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There are many factors contribute to the dimpling effect of Cellulite:

  • age

  • hormones

  • connective tissues and how they tighten

  • lack of elasticity in the skin

  • accumulation of fat in the upper layers of the skin

The above factors in which contribute to cellulite cannot be addressed by liposuction, simply because liposuction only removes fat from a deeper layer of the skin and not the upper layers where cellulite occurs. 

Liposuction does help significantly with the removal of fat and helps tremendously with contouring for most patients. Some surgeons believe that liposuction can actually make cellulite look worse - and there are other surgeons who believe that some patients can have an improved appearance with their cellulite after liposuction. There is no permanent  cure for cellulite.




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                                       Image of Cellulite with the indentations and dimpling




There are two different types of Cellulite


Cottage Cheese cellulite is when you visibly can see cells of fat under very thin skin. This type of cellulite is a defect in the thickness of the skin or collagen of the dermis (the middle layer of the skin). Cottage Cheese cellulite is not the most common type of cellulite - and it is more prevalent in women who have thin skin - either by genetics or by aging.


This type of cellulite is more commonly seen, and is caused from the skin losing elasticity.   Lattice-work cellulite consists of tiny little bands of collagen that connect from the muscle or bone to the skin that holds the subcutaneous fat in a lattice work pattern. These bands of collagen are very strong and do not diminish in strength over time. As the skin loses elasticity, the lattice-work collagen holds onto the skin at certain spots, making the indentations or cellulite appearance.

The skin loses elasticity from:

Decreasing the loss of elasticity of the skin and also the dermal elements help to keep cellulite at bay.




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Other Treatments to Help Cellulite

Liposuction in conjunction with other procedures - such as endermologie or laser surgery can sometimes help cellulite in it's appearance. There are many surgical and non-surgical cellulite treatments available today, each with advantages and disadvantages.



  • Endermologie: 

Endermologie is a technology developed in France by a plastic surgeon, is effective in improving the appearance of celluite.  It is also good with contour irregularities from liposuction and fat transfer nodules. Endermologie is a patented vacuum device that creates suction to lift your tissue while the rollers create suction to the connective tissue and fat nodules - to improve the appearance of cellulite. 

According to physicians who use endermologie: 

  • the thickness of the subcutaneous fat layer decreases

  • blood flow and lymphatic drainage increase

  • facilitating the elimination of excess fluid and fat cells

  • FDA Approved technique for comprehensive cellulite removal




Mesotherpay is a non-invasive treatment, which is injected directly near the cellulite fat cells.  A series of injections of various pharmaceutical and homeopathic chemical agents into the selective areas of fat. This procedure is not FDA approved. Mesotherapy or injection lipolysis - basically targets the fat cells by inducing them to rupture or causing cellular death.

The most common chemical agents injected with Mesotherapy:

  • Phosphatidycholine Sodium Deoxycholate

  • Aminophylline

  • Yohimbine

  • Procaine

  • Lidocaine

  • L-Carnitine

Even though some of the drugs that make up the Mesotherapy solution are FDA Approved - it is not an approved application to be used as a liquid solution for the injections directly into the skin.  Some of the other compounds used for Mesotherapy do not have any FDA Approval - like vitamins, minerals, biotin, etc. This procedure is considered "experimental".

Mesotherapy side effects include:

  • burning

  • itching

  • irritation at the injection sites

  • swelling during and after the procedure

  • bruising at the injection sites

This non-invasive procedure can be controversial, as the injection consists of several non-approved medications. Make sure you talk to your surgeon or dermatologist regarding the pros and cons of this procedure. There is a huge need for the proper scientific studies performed regarding this treatment along with appropriate safety information and guidelines established. 





Laser Therapy is a non-surgical procedure that is used to reduce the appearance of cellulite.  Lasers target the affected areas of cellulite by increasing circulation - melt away excess fatty tissue and release any built up fluids. The laser treatments can also improve collagen production which will fill in the dimpled areas to make them appear smooth.





VelaSmooth is a different type of cellulite treatment in which it uses ELOS (Electrical Optical Synergy) Technology. VelaSmooth is not a weight loss procedure, but it does reshape and contour your body for a slimmer look and feel. Average course of treatment consists of two 45-60 minute treatments per week for up to 6 - 8 weeks. 

VelaSmooth uses ELOS Technology which works using a combination of the following:

  • bi-polar radio frequency (RF)

  • Light infrared energy

  • Tissue manipulation

ELOS uses the vacuum and dual action rollers of endermologie - however; it helps manipulate and smooth the skin more effectively with the help of the RF (radio-frequency) and infrared energies.


It is these forces that help increase the body's metabolism and shrink fat chambers, tightening the skin and helping with reducing cellulite quickly.


VelaSmooth side effects: 

  • redness

  • sensitivity

  • bruising will sometimes occur, but is normally temporary





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