Sometimes people can have areas of their body where stubborn fat pockets accumulate that are very difficult to shift in spite of commitment to diet & exercise. These pockets typically form in the lower tummy, the "love handles" around the loins, the "saddle bags" on the lower buttock / outer thighs, the inner thighs, or the neck as a "double chin". By injecting Aqualyx® directly into these pockets we can break down the fat cells resulting in a reduction in size of the fat layer within that area of skin.
Aqualyx® is a unique compound containing deoxycholic acid, which is a natural substance released from your liver in the bile to dissolve dietary fat. When injected into the fat cells below the skin, the deoxycholic acid causes the wall of the fat cell to break down in a process called adipocytolyis. The body then creates an inflammatory response causing the immune system to send cells to the fat layer to "mop up" the excess fat released. These cells then transport the released fat via the lymphatic system to the kidneys to pass out in the urine.
What can I expect?
"Fat-dissolving" injections - Aqualyx®
Aqualyx® is delivered by a series of injections in the fat layer below the skin. The fat layer itself has no nerve endings, and as a result the procedure is relatively painless. To make it even more painless, we mix a local anaesthetic (lidocaine) with the Aqualyx® prior to administration. The fat cells begin breaking down almost immediately after the procedure, although the inflammatory response takes place over the next few days to 2 weeks. During this period you can expect some swelling and soreness which will gradually ease off. It usually requires a course of treatments, given at intervals of 4-6 weeks to break down all the undesired fat. Most people can see results after 2 treatments, though for stubborn areas or larger pockets of fat, sometimes 3-5 treatments can be needed.
It should be noted that Aqualyx® is not a "weight loss" treatment as such, as the actual volume of fat removed is relatively small. It works best in people who are already putting in maximal effort into their lifestyle through an appropriate low fat diet and exercise.
How does it work?
Possible side effects
Swelling after the procedure is common, and is actually desirable, as this is a demonstration of the body reacting to clear the fat as intended. For treatment of the neck, this swelling can be quite significant. Swelling usually resolves within a few days, at most, up to 2 weeks. Some people can bruise after the procedure. This will resolve on its own within a few days to weeks. A rarer complication is the development of nodules or lumps within the fat layer. These usually resolve by 6-8 weeks without the need for treatment. When treating the double chin area in men there may be patchy hair loss to the beard regrowth for up to 3 months after completion of treatment.
How can I prepare for Aqualyx® treatment?
Ideally, prior to having Aqualyx®, you should have tried diet and exercise to reduce the fat pockets. In the week prior to your treatment you should avoid taking vitamin E supplements and fish oil supplements. You should also avoid taking asprin or anti-inflammatory drugs such as Ibuprofen or Naproxen, unless these are prescribed by your GP for a medical condition. If you are a man having treatment to a double chin, you will need to shave the neck area - we can't treat what we can't see!
What do I need to do after Aqualyx® treatment?
You should avoid extreme heat or severe cold for a few days after the treatment. Physical exertion should also be avoided for a few days as this can reduce the effectiveness of the treatment by reducing the inflammatory response to the treated area. For the same reasons, you should avoid taking anti-inflammatory medication for 1-2 weeks, unless you are taking these for a medical condition on the advice of your GP or specialist.
If you have had your body / limbs treated then tight fitting garments (e.g spanks) can help reduce swelling and speed up recovery.
You should avoid other fat reducing /skin tightening treatments such as radiofrequency / HIFU/Cryolipolysis until around 4-6 weeks after your last treatment.