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April 21, 2011

Bizarre Anti-Aging Treatments Around the World

Cosmetic dermatologist Dr. Fredric Brandt investigates the fat-melting, face-plumping beauty technologies so new, they aren't even available stateside... yet.

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model with tray of plastic surgery tools

Photo Credit: Liz Von Hoene

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LIPOSONIX
Country: Japan

Details: LipoSonix targets subcutaneous fat with a high-frequency ultrasound, literally melting unwanted lumps by breaking them down into fatty acids that are processed and expelled through the liver and kidneys (then banished for good when you pee). The energy waves might cause uncomfortable tingling or warmth in the deep layers of tissue where fat is concentrated, but Japanese doctors claim a single treatment, which takes 30 to 60 minutes, can help you drop a full dress size, or 2.8 centimeters in waist circumference. (On the other side of the spectrum, Zeltiq, the FDA-approved fat-freezing technique, eliminates fat by crystallizing it, as opposed to warming it.)

Best for: Someone in good overall shape looking to shed love handles or excess fat in the stomach or back: It's a targeted approach to problem areas, not a general weight-loss plan. The major advantage over traditional liposuction? LipoSonix is noninvasive.

ETA in the U.S.: In the next 18 months, pending FDA approval.

Price in Japan: $2,500 to $4,000, depending on the body area treated.


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