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A Review of the Use of Ultrasound for Skin Tightening, Body Contouring, and Cellulite Reduction in Dermatology

Juhász, Margit, MD; Korta, Dorota, MD, PhD; Mesinkovska, Natasha Atanaskova, MD, PhD*

doi: 10.1097/DSS.0000000000001551
Review Article
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BACKGROUND Ultrasound (US) technology uses acoustic waves to heat tissue, resulting in thermal damage and coagulative necrosis leading to the renewal of skin elasticity, body contouring, and destruction of cellulite.

OBJECTIVE This review will discuss the use of US for skin tightening, body contouring/sculpting, and cellulite reduction.

MATERIALS AND METHODS A literature search identified studies using US for skin tightening, body contouring/sculpting, and cellulite reduction.

RESULTS Two hundred thirty-one studies were identified using US technology. Twenty studies each were identified addressing body contouring/sculpting and skin tightening, and 2 studies for cellulite reduction. Ultrasound is efficacious for skin rejuvenation, body contouring, and reduction of cellulite of the face, décolletage, abdomen, and thighs. Ultrasound lipolysis results in a 2- to 4.6-cm decrease in abdominal circumference. Ultrasound is safe and can be used in all skin types with minimal concern for postinflammatory hyperpigmentation.

CONCLUSION Ultrasound seems to be an efficacious, effective, and safe modality for correction of skin laxity, lipolysis, and decrease the appearance of cellulite. Adverse effects are minimal including procedural pain, postprocedure erythema, and swelling. Clinicians and patients are both satisfied with results after treatment. In this review, the authors will provide an update on the use of US in the dermatologic field.

*Both authors are affiliated with the Department of Dermatology, University of California, Irvine, Irvine, California

Address correspondence and reprint requests to: Margit Juhász, MD, Department of Dermatology, University of California, Irvine, 843 Health Sciences Road, Room 1001, Irvine, California, 92697, or e-mail: margit.lw.juhasz@gmail.com

The authors have indicated no significant interest with commercial supporters.

© 2018 by the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery, Inc. Published by Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.
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