What Is Mesotherapy?
Taking its meaning from the Greek words, mesos meaning "middle", and therapeia meaning "to treat medically", Mesotherapy was devised in 1952 by French Dr Michel Pistor. The treatment involves multiple injections, containing a cocktail of ingredients; natural extracts, homeopathic, pharmaceutical and vitamins, into the mesoderm (middle layer) of the skin, where the adipose (fat cells) are targeted inducing a process called lipolysis, where the cells rupture and die.
Mesotherapy has been shown to be particularly effective in the treatment of cellulite from the legs and buttocks; by eliminating the fat cells, stimulating circulation and repairing damaged connective tissue, the orange peel appearance associated with cellulite can be greatly reduced or even eradicated completely, leaving smoother, toned skin. The treatment can also be applied to the removal of stubborn pockets of fat which have proved resistant to diet and exercise and, once dispersed; the fat will not recur, as in some other procedures.
By altering the combination of ingredients used in the injecting solution; Mesotherapy is also very effective in facial rejuvenation treatment, helping to stimulate the production of collagen and elastin in the skin, easing fine lines and wrinkles, and leaving the face with a more youthful appearance.
Mesotherapy works by melting the fat and the connective tissues bands which create the unique rippled affect in cellulite. Each treatment lasts approximately twenty minutes, and a course of two to four injections, spaced three weeks apart is recommended. Results can be visible after the first treatment with maintenance treatments then usually scheduled every two to three months. There is no recovery time after the procedure although some clients may experience slight bruising. Whilst some medical practitioners in the UK remain sceptical of the treatments efficacy it is commonly used in France and other European Countries. Side effects are rare, but it is possible to have a reaction to the ingredients injected. At least 24 hours prior to the treatment it is crucial to have an allergy test.
Can You Compare them?
When trying to evaluate the benefits and disadvantages of Mesotherapy and Liposuction as cosmetic treatments, they should be assessed on their own merits rather than trying to make a direct comparison between the two. They are very different procedures both in application and in the results they deliver and, for that reason, should be judged individually.
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The Cost Of Mesotherapy Treatment
The cost of mesotherapy injections in the UK depends upon the size of the area on the body to be treated, and the amount of fat to be removed.The cost can vary from £50 to £100 per treatment and the treatment should only be administered by an experienced practitioner. Some concern has been raised by medical practitioners about the safety of some substances injected under the skin as each practitioner creates their own blend. For that reason, it is essential to ensure the practitioner visited is reputable.
Benefits And Drawbacks
Both of the procedures offer the patient the opportunity to treat their specific body issues in a particular way. If cellulite is the problem, then Mesotherapy is the answer, for more dramatic fat removal, Liposuction could be the right choice. As Mesotherapy is a totally "non-invasive" treatment it has few if any side effects, requires no hospital stay, no anaesthesia and the minimum of down-time. However, it may be worth considering that in June of 2011, the procedure was banned in France as being "a potentially dangerous procedure with no proven beneficial effect". It must be stressed that, to this date, no concerns have been voiced by the UK regulatory authorities. Liposuction is a surgical procedure, normally carried out under a General Anaesthetic, so will carry the attendant risks associated with any operation. It also has a recovery time of at least two weeks, and requires the patient to wear compression garments to aid the healing process, for anything up to four weeks following the procedure. The advice before undertaking any cosmetic procedure, invasive or non-invasive, is to research the treatment thoroughly, take guidance from a qualified practitioner and be absolutely certain of your aesthetic goals and motivations.
Mesotherapy treatments have been performed worldwide for over half a decade - however, physicians have expressed concerns regarding the treatment, with many arguing that it has not been studied enough to make a full conclusion.
The main issue is that mesotherapy has not been subjected to gold standard clinical trials, although it has been studied for use in the pain relief of other ailments. Other criticisms have been noted about the use of it as a cosmetic treatment and the ingredients used within. Rod Rohrich, M.D., Chairman, Department of Plastic Surgery, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, argued: “"There is simply no data, no science and no information, to my knowledge, that mesotherapy works."
There was some controversy when The American Society of Plastic Surgeons issued a position statement that did not endorse mesotherapy, but as mesotherapy is not a surgical treatment but is deemed a non-invasive alternate to cosmetic surgery, it appeals to the same patients that would consider plastic surgery. Dermatologist Dr. Robin Ashinoff disagrees with the premise that it is a “quick fix”, stating there is “no quick fix for fat or fat deposits or for cellulite” at the American Academy of Dermatology. Currently banned in South American Countries, many dermatologist and plastic surgeons are alarmed about the growing profile of mesotherapy.