Is Low Frequency Ultrasound (20-32 KHZ) for Lipolysis As Effective As High Frequency Ultrasound?

I have reviewed a few studies in Europe that have proven Low Frequency Ultrasound for lipolysis (20-32 KHZ) more affective then High frequency ultrasound. Is this true and does it actually implode the fat cells? Is it safe?. One company in the United States offers LFU for fat reduction and states that the fat cells are removed naturally resulting in a 1-2" waist circumferance reduction. I though LFU has not been approved by the FDA in the US?

Doctor Answers 4

UltraShape is Different than Cavislim Device

Low frequency ultrasound such as the Cavislim device at 40KHz at the same power setting (Wattage) should have different effects on fat than a higher frequency machine such as the UltraShape device operating at 200 +/- 30 KHz. The power is an independent factor as is the focal length for focused ultrasound energy.

The bottom line is that although these devices are labeled as non-invasive the ones that are most effective such as the UltraShape are a Class 2 medical device and are only administered by a RN, MD, PA, or DO in California and many other states. Problems and complications are possible if used not as directed or by the  non-trained.

Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 72 reviews

UltraShape body contour

UltraShape uses focused ultrasound to rupture the fat cells that are permanently destroyed.  Usually 3 treatments are necessary, 2 to 4 weeks apart.  As long as a healthy lifestyle are maintained, the results are permanent.

Martie Gidon, MD, FRCPC
Toronto Dermatologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

UltraShape Lipolysis

UltraShape uses non thermal cavitation - destruction of the fat cells.  We are very excited for the introduction of this machine to the US market.

Craig Mezrow, MS, MD
Philadelphia Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Fat removal

The question between low and high frequency ultrasound is a common debate.  The most important issue is not the source of energy but the technique used (the doctor) and the expectations you are trying to achieve.  Ultrasound in general is not going to eliminate fat, that is only done through liposuction which can include RFAL devices designed to tighten the skin and help with cellulite.  Ultrasound devices can help non-surgically by disrupting the fat cell and reducing the size of it, thus reducing your circumference.  Some claims are made by some devices that they destroy the fat cell and some are approved for use in the USA.  It is more important that you seek the advice of a plastic surgeon who specializes in body contouring and who has several options, surgically and non-surgically, to offer you depending on your goals.  The device itself should not be your focus, the best and safest procedure done by a qualified doctor who assess your goals, should be your focus.

good luck on your search for the doctor and procedure as well as your aesthetic goals.


R. Stephen Mulholland, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 57 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.