Cavitation - does it work, is it permanent and how long does it take to see results?
Cavitation is a cosmetic treatment that can help remove unwanted fat from the body.
Technically known as ultrasound cavitation or ultrasonic cavitation, it’s considered the main alternative to liposuction.
In this article:
Duration of results
Back to work
Full recovery time
No recovery time
920 SAR to 1,530 SAR
30 to 60 min
OTC pain relief
What is cavitation?
First, a quick definition of cavitation: it is a treatment to remove excess fat from specific areas of your body, using ultrasound waves.
The procedure is delivered by a handheld device passed over your skin. And – unlike lipo – there’s no invasive surgery involved.
Cavitation is usually less expensive and more convenient than traditional liposuction and is considered especially excellent for removing fat from the chin area and jawline
Ultrasonic cavitation is designed for contouring small, specific areas of your body rather than trying to achieve weight loss.
How does the cavitation procedure work?
Powerful ultrasound waves break down the fatty deposits lying beneath the skin’s surface.
Once these fat cells have been broken up, your body has to get rid of them. To do this, it relies on the lymphatic system – a network of vessels and nodes that transport fluids around your body, and help dispose of waste.
Despite being a relatively new procedure, research confirms that cavitation does indeed work, with the Journal of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons noting that “the most effective instruments for non-invasive fat reduction use ultrasounds”.
What the treatment is like
A practitioner moves the device over the affected area – for example, your stomach or hips – rather than your whole body. It may feel warm on your skin, but that’s about it. You’ll be relatively oblivious to the remarkable science taking place beneath the surface.
How it compares to liposuction
Both are fat-removal treatments. But during lipo, a surgeon will make a small cut into your skin to access the fat cells.
Cavitation doesn’t involve any incisions. Instead, it all happens over the top of your skin, so recovery time is minimal compared to what you’d need after liposuction, where you may have to take a few weeks off work, depending on your role.
The risks and side-effects are also far smaller, while liposuction is also much more expensive. You may need repeat cavitation sessions, however, so be sure to ask your practitioner about this.
Is it permanent and how long does it take to see the effects?
As with any cosmetic procedure, you should always book with a qualified clinician and sit down for a consultation to discuss your options.
Remember to shop around for a consultant who shares your vision for results.
Is cavitation permanent?
Cavitation is generally considered to produce permanent results, as the treatment breaks down fatty deposits in your body. However, the treatment doesn’t prevent your body from creating new fat cells – and it is not seen as a weight loss solution.
How long does it take to see the effects of cavitation?
You should start to see the effects between six and 12 weeks after treatment, as the process takes time to work through your body. People often have several sessions over a few weeks and months. Three ultrasound cavitation treatments are around the average number, but you may need more or less.
You’re likely to get better results if you’re a non-smoker. Smoking restricts the blood flow to your tissues, and in turn your body then needs more oxygen for healing. Try to stop smoking several weeks before having any kind of fat removal procedure to help reduce inflammation.
Does it hurt?
Generally, ultrasound cavitation doesn’t hurt – and some people even say they have found it relaxing and therapeutic. That said, you might want to take paracetamol beforehand – and clear your diary for a few days – just in case. Afterwards, avoid the gym until you’re feeling ready, and get some arnica gel to help reduce any bruising.
What are the side-effects?
Possible side-effects include tenderness around the area that’s been treated. But as it’s non-invasive, these are considerably less intense than after lipo.
Is it safe?
It is generally considered to be incredibly safe, but always make sure you seek out a qualified, experienced clinician to perform the treatment.
When it comes to other non-invasive cosmetic options, CoolSculpting can be a good alternative. It works by freezing fat cells, which are then slowly expelled from your body in a similar way to cavitation.
However, it can be more expensive (depending on how many sessions you need), and the results can take up to three months to show.
Liposuction is probably the alternative that produces the fastest results. But it is important to consider when weighing up all your options that it is invasive, more expensive, and will almost certainly have a longer recovery time.
All of the content and material of selfologi.com (the “Website”), such as text, treatments, dosages, outcomes, charts, profiles, graphics, photographs, images, advice, messages, forum postings, and any other material (the “Content”) are provided on this Website on an "as is" basis for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for nor intended to replace professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding your health. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this Website. Many external links have been provided on this Website as a service and convenience to visitors to our Website. These external sites are created and maintained by other public and private organizations. Selfologi DMCC does not control or guarantee the information of external websites and does not recommend or endorse any specific tests, physicians, products, opinions, or other information that may be mentioned on the Website, or on any linked websites, apps and/or services. Reliance on any Content provided by Selfologi DMCC, by persons appearing on the Website at the invitation of Selfologi DMCC, or by other members is solely at your own risk. If you think you have a medical emergency, call your doctor or emergency medical services immediately. If you have any questions or comments about the website, please contact us.