Want Thinner Thighs? Is Ultrasound a Viable Option?
Devices promising fat reduction using noninvasive techniques are attractive to consumers, but do they actually work?
A recent clinical trial evaluated one such FDA-approved ultrasound device to see effects on thigh fat thickness and circumference reduction. The device, marketed under the name “UltraShape” is currently approved for reducing abdominal fat.
In this study, the device used the focused ultrasound energy to produce localized mechanical cellular membrane disruption in adipocytes that resulted in the breakdown of fat in thighs. The study enrolled 14 women and used one thigh as the control measure while the other thigh received 3 biweekly focused ultrasound treatments. Before the study and at each treatment visit, photographs of the thighs were taken; the fat thickness of both thighs was measured by both caliper and ultrasound; the patient’s height, weight, and circumference of both thighs were measured by conventional measuring tape.
The results showed significant reduction in circumference and fat thickness at all follow-up measurements by the various measurements. The authors conclude that this focused ultrasound device is safe, effective, and well tolerated to improve the circumference and fat thickness of the thighs without any significant side effects.
They note that the improvements are subtle with the number of treatments given in this study, but with a larger study with more treatments more dramatic results may be seen.