Cellulite – What Is It And What Treatments Work Best?

Cellulite – All women know what this is? Yet there is excellent difference and some controversy in the medical neighborhood as to what it is and whether it is in fact a genuine thing, a real medical diagnosis!

The WebMD website says that “its name makes it sound like a medical condition”! Well, this “non-medical” condition seriously impacts and deeply difficulties some 80- 90% of adult females! Hundreds of millions of dollars are spent each year attempting to treat it.

If all that does not certify cellulite as a real condition deserving of regard and attention by our physicians then something’s extremely incorrect! However, there are lots of frightening sounding “medical condition” names which have actually been applied to what we frequently call cellulite including adiposis edematosa, dermopanniculosis deformans, status protrusus cutis, and gynoid lipodystrophy. Common labels for cellulite include orange peel syndrome, cottage cheese skin, quilted bed mattress skin, and seat cushion skin.

Cellulite is rarely seen in men – is it a hormonally linked condition? Why does cellulite predominantly affect the abdomen, thighs and buttocks – why these areas?

Most of us, patients and doctors alike, would recognize cellulite to be a dimpled, puckered, irregular appearing skin surface affecting large areas. There seems to be a pseudoherniation (a bulging out without a true bulging through) of the superficial subcutaneous fat poking nearly through the tight fibrous connective tissue bands (which are supposed to act as retaining walls for the fat) underneath the skin. We see the sum total of all these bulges as an overall lumpy, bumpy look to the surface of the skin.

Doctors studying this dimpling phenomenon also acknowledged that depending upon its intensity, body position could also impact the appearance of cellulite. In 1978, the Nurnburger-Muller Scale was published:

The Nurnburger-Muller Scale( 1978) for Cellulite Classification:


0 – no noticeable dimpling


1 – dimpling noticeable on pinch/squeeze just

2 – dimpling visible on standing only (not when lying down).

3 – dimpling always present/visible (whether standing or lying down).

There are a wide range of “choices” offered for dealing with cellulite today. A recent Google search on “treatments for cellulite” revealed 1.4 million hits! But do any of them truly work? Dr. Molly Wanner (kept in mind Harvard dermatologist) said “there is no treatment for cellulite”. Kept in mind dermatologist Michael McGuire of UCLA concurred (NY Times short article, 2009).

Weight reduction and strength training should help, but are not always the response! Cellulite is not always related to being obese or out of shape. Skinny or obese – you can still have cellulite. Lots of slim females in fantastic shape are pestered with cellulite.

Nutritional modifications and dietary supplements apparently of assistance in the fight against cellulite include the use of gingko biloba, sweet clover, grape seed bioflavonoids, bladderwrack extract, oil of night primrose, fish oil, omega 3’s & 6’s, soy lecithin, green tea, milk thistle, and niacin. Objectives of these: increase metabolism, increase circulation, boost cellular nutrition, and boost fat metabolism/breakdown. So called anti-cellulite diets are created to decrease inflammation, boost circulation, and increase fat metabolism. If any of these intended effects are actually happening, it is very tough to prove or disprove any of these claims or to determine.

Anti-cellulite creams typically contain forms of methylxanthines (theophylline, aminophylline, caffeine) known to decrease blood vessel flow, decrease tissue fluids and to increase fat metabolism – but do they even get through the skin? Decreasing tissue fluids does have the effect of temporarily reducing the appearance of cellulite. As you will see throughout this article, any technique temporarily decreasing tissue fluids will temporarily “work”!

Retin-A/retinols show some advantage through the general enhancements in skin quality that include the better complexion and smoothness they can effectuate. There is some proof that integrating Retin-A with a few of the methylxanthine-containing creams may develop a synergistic result much better than either one alone for lowering the look of cellulite.

Tanning does assist lessen the look of cellulite. But tanning rays from the sun or from a hair salon cubicle work through a UV radiation damage to the skin! This carries more genuine downsides (skin aging, skin looks even worse long term, skin cancer dangers) than any potential advantages. Spray-type or artificial tanning techniques are a much safer alternative!

Organic, seaweed and other kinds of body “wraps” work by decreasing tissue fluids (i.e., they do work, however it is only momentary).

Deep tissue massage will in theory increase local blood circulation, eliminate toxins, and reduce the tissue fluids. The only one of these three which have actually proven (albeit momentary) effectiveness is the “decrease the fluid” claim! Massage as a part of any treatment method will result in at least temporary improvement in cellulite because it causes a temporary decrease in tissue fluids and a temporary “redistribution/shifting” of the subcutaneous fat.

The Endermology gadget utilizes an unique roller vacuum/massage technique. This does help – however like many treatments – it is short-term. Short term, temporary treatments like Endermology appear reliable because they reduce tissue fluids in the area, and/or result a momentary fat “redistribution”. As you will continue to see, this method is the basis for many cellulite treatment options.

The Silhouette device is essentially comparable to the Endermology innovation, utilizing the massage principles of decreasing tissue fluids and shift/redistributing of fat for momentarily minimizing the appearance of cellulite.

The injected chemical cocktails are intended to induce fat “melting” not really for the treatment of cellulite. And even more irregularities in skin surface texture can result from a mesotherapy treatment because the melting is not necessarily uniform or even – i.e. more cellulite!

This heat can melt fat and “shrink wrap” loose skin to various degrees. It makes sense that this should have benefits for cellulite – or does it?

Vanquish utilizes RF to heat and kill fat cells in method similar to HIFU( see below). The skin can get very warm/hot (like an extreme sun tanning direct exposure). A series of 6 – 8 treatment sessions, each lasting about 45 minutes is required. Total cost has to do with $3000 -$ 4000.

Pellevé uses RF and massage for the (as anticipated) “short-lived improvement” of cellulite.

Infrared light/red light as a kind of non-invasive low level laser treatment (LLLT) seems to really work – however (as all the research has revealed) it must be the ideal wavelength of light to work.

Diode laser based systems rely on a series of treatments to be most efficient, as most treatments do. Diode lasers can be a key component of a non-invasive LLLT system and will have benefit if the proper wavelength is utilized.

Smooth Shapes uses a vacuum massage plus a 650nm light and a 915nm laser. The massage effects are short-term. The low level laser therapy (LLLT) has more of basis for long term efficiency but there is no research study supported/peer evaluated published data on these light or laser wavelengths.

The TriActive device utilizes a type of LLLT plus vacuum massage.

Liposuction is a fantastic alternative for recontouring the body by means of the elimination of frustrating localized fat deposits, but it is a poor choice for treating cellulite itself. Liposuction is very not likely to make any locations of cellulite any much better and can in fact make locations of overlying cellulite even worse!

SmartLipo laser lipolysis (fat melting) innovation is a minimally invasive (not non-invasive) procedure. Theory: laser melts the fat, tightens up the skin, causing general smoothing. In practice – respectable for eliminating stubborn fat, rarely helps the cellulite.

Cellulaze is from the exact same business (Cynosure) that makes the SmartLipo devices. Cellulaze is similarly promoted as a “minimally invasive” treatment – but these are surgical procedures! A thin laser cable is inserted under the skin through an incision to melt the subcutaneous fat and snip the fibrous bands tethering the skin. It works – sort of – but not great. All the risks of a surgical procedure- recovery/downtime concerns, infection, scarring – should be considered.

This technique is sometimes recommended in one form or another to treat cellulite. The effectiveness of the subcision technique for treating cellulite has never been clearly established.

Collagenases are actual connective tissue liquifying enzymes which are applied to or injected under the skin, meant to loosen up the tight, fibrous bands as a method to possibly ravel the bumpiness. There are many continuous research studies, however this is still completely speculative.

The focused ultrasound generates intense heat under the skin, killing and melting the fat cells as a possible alternative to liposuction – but it really hurts! Neither technology has been shown to have any positive effect on cellulite. For all we know, the effects of ultrasound or freezing on cellulite could be similar to that often seen for liposuction – not good!

The Verjú Green Laser is a completely non-invasive, non-painful, sophisticated technology that actually works! Please see our short article, “The Verjú Green Laser: Non-Invasive Fat and Cellulite Reduction” for more information about this interesting, brand-new anti-cellulite innovation!

Dr. Lyle Back is originally from New York City, receiving his surgical and medical training at Rutgers Medical School, Cooper Hospital – University Medical Center, and Ohio State. He specializes in the full range of the most modern and state of the art cosmetic surgery procedures for the body and non-surgical cosmetic enhancement techniques available today.


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Everyone wants to lose weight. Woman and men alike, but most of them don’t have any clue what food to eat that will make them lose weight. To lose weight you have to control your carbs and also have to be careful on what to eat. Eating the right food and keeping the right diet won’t just make you skinny but it can also make you skinny. There are a thousand stores that sell healthy food so you’ll have different choices on what to eat.

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Besides eating the right type of food and watching how many calories you eat, exercising will be a big help when trying to lose weight. Of course though if you exercise, you would still need to eat the right food and you will need to keep it up. There are different exercises that you can do in order to lose weight.

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All the talk today about losing weight is usually so that your body looks good and nothing else. Many people will go to extremes and take pills that actually harm their body to lose weight and make their bodies thinner. How about losing weight not for just superficial reasons as looking the hottest and losing weight to actually change your life for the better. Losing weight will obviously make you thinner and look better if it is what you please, but losing weight does so much more for you than that. Losing weight makes you feel better, makes your skin healthier and cures diseases.

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Women often find that a number of areas of their lives change once they reach the age of 40. They gain extra weight in their stomach, have problems getting enough sleep and don’t seem to get the same results from their exercise attempts that they once did. They often have less energy and more stress, making them less efficient at everything they do.

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Most people want to lose weight because it will make them look better, but the truth is that losing weight is a health benefit none of us can ignore. We allow the pattern of weight gain to proceed from our forties and beyond, and before we know it, we are facing some serious and dangerous situations later in life.

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