Despite the many amazing advances in aesthetic procedures, products, and technology in my nearly 30 years of plastic surgery and cosmetic medicine practice, one elusive problem has remained: an effective and lasting option for cellulite treatment. There have been many claims promoted utilizing topical creams, massage, and energy technologies, cryopipolysis or CoolSculpting, as well as more invasive options such as incision, subscision, laser therapies, fat grafting, and surgical techniques. Although surgical tissue release as in body lifting can be effective, none of the other non-surgical and less invasive procedures have had any real or lasting proven benefit in my experience… until now.
All of us at EVOLV Plastic Surgery and Medical Aesthetics in Toledo are especially proud to be the first medical practice in the Northwest Ohio area and one of the few selected sites in the country to offer QWO from ENDO… the first and only FDA approved, and research-based injectable treatment for the treatment of moderate and severe cellulite.
What exactly is cellulite? Cellulite isn’t just fat and is not caused by what you eat or by lack of exercise nor affected by weight loss. The term was first introduced in the 1920s to represent the dimpling and nodularity seen on the buttocks, thighs, and pelvic areas of most adult women… over 90% of adult women, and rarely in males.
Cellulite is the result of the herniation or protrusion of fat under the skin (subcutaneous fat) within the connective tissue and fibrous bands that anchor the skin to the deeper tissue below. Cellulite may result from a variety of factors including hormone, genetic and lifestyle conditions.
One challenge is the fact that cellulite is a multifactorial condition and is influenced by the architecture of the fibrous collagen bands or septae anchoring the skin in females, as well as the quality or thickness of the overlying skin and the amount and protrusion of the fat immediately below the skin (subcutaneous) contained or compartmentalized within the fibrous septae.
Although we have seen some limited improvement in the appearance of cellulite, I have some patients with advanced medical skincare products that improve skin health and firmness, as well as with non-invasive treatments such as acoustic wave therapy (link to Cellutone) and other vacuum/massage and light therapy devices, no treatment has provided lasting correction of any significance other than surgical procedures… until now!
EVOLV is excited to introduce QWO, the first and only FDA-approved injectable treatment that has been clinically proven in research studies to provide long-lasting improvement in the appearance of moderate and severe cellulite in women. QWO has been studied in more patients (over 1800 women) than any other cellulite treatment.
What Exactly Is ‘QWO’?
QWO is an injectable prescription medication that consists of several enzymes called ‘collagenases’ that specifically target the fibrous collagen bands underneath the skin.
How do I know if QWO treatment for cellulite is right for me?
As with any procedure or treatment at EVOLV, medical history and examination will be needed to determine if QWO injectable therapy is appropriate for each patient. Although QWO has been shown to be effective in most patients with moderate and even severe cellulite, the treatment may not be for everyone, and only a paper history and physical examination can determine if QWO treatment is the most effective option.
How does QWO work?
Research studies indicate that QWO works in 3 ways:
1) Dissolving and releasing the fibrous bands that tether the skin.
2) Encourages the redistribution and reorganization of fat cells to a smoother orientation.
3) Stimulates the growth of new collagen to firm the skin.
What Is The Recommended Protocol For QWO Treatment?
The QWO cellulite treatment consists of a series of 3 injections approximately 3 weeks apart for best results. Although there may be an occasional patient with only minimal cellulite that will respond adequately to two injections, most women in the clinical studies requires a series of 3 separate treatments for best results.
Are QWO Treatments Uncomfortable?
The QWO injections consist of placing a small amount of product directly into each cellulite dimple with a very small gauge needle and takes typically less than 15 minutes. Most patients do not find this uncomfortable, and the treatment is tolerated quite well without any anesthetic.
What Can I Expect After QWO Treatments?
The most significant issue after QWO injections is the bruising in the treatment area, but this can be reduced by light therapy as well as topical and oral anti-inflammatory products. Depending on the area treated some tenderness may be felt quickly after treatment up to 48 hours afterward. As with any medication, potential allergic reactions are possible but are extremely rare.
How Much Improvement Should I Expect With QWO Treatment?
As with any elective aesthetic treatment, specific results cannot be guaranteed but it should be emphasized that in multiple clinical studies in over 1800 patients, significant improvement in both moderate as well as severe buttock cellulite was consistently experienced with a series of 3 QWO injection treatments. EVOLV Medical Aesthetics has developed a more comprehensive program incorporating QWO injections for cellulite treatment (see below) as well as EmsculptNEO for fat reduction and improved muscle in the buttocks, which will provide the most long-lasting and effective body contouring and cellulite improvement.
The EVOLV Cellulite Program
Because cellulite is a multifactorial condition involving several fundamental components, EVOLV Plastic Surgery and Medical Aesthetics believes that a holistic or comprehensive approach addressing each key fundamental issue is the most efficient approach to obtain the optimal results for each patient. The EVOLV Cellulite Program is composed of a personalized series of noninvasive therapies based on each patient’s goals and the degree or severity of each patient’s cellulite change. The program treatment options are focused on the 3 fundamental parameters of cellulite: the thickened fibrous bands under tethering the skin, thinning and loss of elasticity in the overlying skin, and enlarged fat cells within the fibrous compartments under the skin.
- QWO injections work to release these bands and to stimulate new collagen and reorganize fat cells.
- Cellutone acoustic wave therapy is a noninvasive office treatment that can improve the results of QWO injections by non-thermally and non-invasively further disrupting the tethering fibrous bands and improving lymphatic drainage and circulation under the skin.
- EMSCULPT NEO is an exciting option and the only FDA cleared technology that simultaneously improves muscle tone and volume while tightening skin and reducing excess fat… all of which can improve the appearance of cellulite when combined with the benefits of QWO injections.
- Exilis Ultra is a noninvasive office treatment combining proprietary radiofrequency and ultrasound energy to firm skin and help in redistributing fat cells to improve surface contour effectively enhancing QWO injectable therapy results.
- Advanced medical skincare regimens incorporating state of the art topical exfoliants, antioxidants, growth factors, and Vitamin A retinoids have been proven to increase global skin elasticity, collagen production, and overall youthfulness which are significant benefits in long-lasting and effective cellulite improvement.
All of us at EVOLV are excited to be the first medical practice in the area to offer QWO injectable therapy for cellulite. The EVOLV professional providers have completed certified training in QWO therapy as we believe that the training and experience of an aesthetic provider have always been and will always be the most important factor in achieving safe and optimal results for each patient in any treatment. In addition, we are quite excited as well to apply our belief in comprehensive aesthetics to the QWO treatments by adding additional noninvasive and proven treatments that can improve the results of QWO injections as well as the longevity of the benefits.
If you are interested in learning more about the new EVOLV Cellulite Treatment Program with QWO injectable therapy, we encourage you to call our office at 419-720-2008 and schedule a consultation to discuss with any of our EVOLV professionals.