Simultaneous Delivery of RF and HIFEM Damages Fat Cells

At follow-up, adipocytes were flattened/shrunken and of smaller size with occasional ruptures of the cytoplasmic membrane.

The combination RF and HIFEM device damaged fat cells.
The combination RF and HIFEM device damaged fat cells.

Subjects treated with a device that simultaneously delivers radiofrequency (RF) and high intensity focused electro-magnetic (HIFEM) technology (Emsculpt Neo, BTL Aesthetics) showed damaged adipocytes and a smaller waist circumference, according to the findings of a study published in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology (April 2021). 

Four subjects (51.50 ± 6.35 years, 22.59 ± 3.21 kg/m2) underwent three 30-minute abdominal treatments of RF therapy and HIFEM. One subject (57 years old, 23.60 kg/m2) served as a control. Researchers collected punch biopsies at baseline, one week and one month post-treatment. Samples were sliced and stained with H&E. Waist circumference, digital photographs, subject satisfaction and therapy comfort were assessed. 

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Baseline samples showed a healthy appearance of adipocytes, composed of round-shaped unilocular cells of uniform size. At follow-up, treated adipocytes demonstrated nuclear and shape changes with consequent fat reductions. Adipocytes were found to be flattened or shrunken and of smaller size (-33.5% at one week, -31.7% at one month) along with occasional ruptures of the cytoplasmic membrane. In contrast to baseline, pyknotic nuclei with condensed nuclear chromatin were seen at one week and one month post-treatment.

The control samples showed no treatment-related changes. Waist circumference decreased by an average of 2.20 cm in the treated patients. No adverse events were observed. The fat temperature reached 42-45° C during treatment. The treatment was recorded as comfortable with high patient satisfaction.

 

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