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VellaShape Burns - Denver, CO

I am an extreamly active 35 year old female. I...

I am an extreamly active 35 year old female. I wear a size 4, 133pds, 5'6", medium shoulder frame. I have run in over 18 organized half marathons in the past 16 months.

I had a 3 year old boy who stretched the skin on my belly by about an inch. I cannot physically get this skin tighten with diet or exercise. So,after speaking with American Laser Center about it, they reccomended 8 treatments of the VellaShape to help tighten this area. Yes, this was for my own satisfaction and not a weight loss method.

The first treatement was on Friday, 09/09/11, The sucking and heat was tolerable during the first pass, which lasted 20 minutes of back and forth movements.

Apparently, the heat increased for the second 20 minutes session a few minutes later, because as soon as it touched my abdomin, I felt a "Pinch" which I later learned was burn. The technician lifted the machine immiatly and moved to my other side not realizing that she just burned me and put the maching onto my left side and I immiatly relized that i was burned!

She stopped and said that the first pass should be good. I asked for some ice and she said that I would be just fine. Since I was red from the first treatment, the burn was not noticable...but, I felt it.

I went back to show them the burns today (friday was the procedure, today is monday) and they said that once the burn heals they can do an EMatrix procedure on the scar to help that go away. They asked to see my doctors papers for their records and took some pictures. I asked for a refund of the $1000 for the Vellashape treatment...fingers crossed that I see the credit within a few weeks....Pictures are attached.

Probably not a good thing to invest in.

Update: After visiting my doctor the following...

Update: After visiting my doctor the following day, I was perscribed burn cream and kept the wounds covered for weeks. The burns are starting to heal and I continued to try and get a refund.

I was extreamly surpised to only get a 3/4 refund, which left me paying $250 for this service. I expected American Laser Skincare to be thrilled that I was not charging them for any of my costs with the doctor or med's...

We tried to use Ematrix on the smaller scar and I have yet to notice ANY difference.

I am sad to say that I am not only left with 2 scars on a very visable area, but also with a $250 charge for it.
American Laser Center

After 1 procedure, I did not see anything positive and I strongly suggest everyone to save their money on this one! Do not go to American Laser Skincare!

1 out of 5 stars Overall rating
1 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
1 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
1 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
4 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
3 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
4 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
3 out of 5 stars Wait times
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Comments (29)

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If you feel the treatment getting hot, you should tell the technician. She will stop! Plus, in the release that you sign before treatment, it tells you there's a possibility for burns and bruising. I've been 4 times, and it's gotten really hot, but I told her and she stopped for a minute, and no burn marks. One or two small bruises and that's it.
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The burn marks are gone. I think the products (Burt's bees and Clayton Shagal) worked
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Hello. Friday was my 6th velashape/velasmooth treatment. I am very IMPRESSED and HAPPY with my results. I've lost 2 inches in my thighs already! I was told by the technicians that you are supposed to work out after your sessions to keep blood circulating, drink plenty of water and maintain a healthy diet for maximum results. They also told me that a healthy and active individual is the best candidate.

I've only gotten one bruise which was on my 5th session. I will say velasmooth is like a hot, pinching, kneading motion which hurts worse on less fatty areas... The fat areas you don't feel much at all.. As far as velashape goes it's really not all that painful just a sucking (vacuum hose feeling) motion that gets hot. For the results I recieved I say it was definitely worth the uncomfortable pinching. I'm definitely a fan! :-)
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Also the technicians told me most results are seen after the 4th session
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i went to 2 places- los angeles county for the first 3. the 3rd was a joke- they did a 10 minute session . groupon got on their case so i get another session.
the 4th and 5th was in Orange county. they knew i had sessions somewhere else. i have been using clayton shagal collagen plus for the burn because a skin specialist told she used that for burns and it went away quicker. i has been working :)
i also use burt's bees ointment too.
that is an awesome price. i did ask on this website about exercise and velashape. check the board for the response
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oops! typo- it should read" it has been working".
Also I contacted GROUPON and told then that I got burned. I got my FULL amount I paid (even though I had 2 sessions)and I did not have to face the owner in person to get my remaining amount back.
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I got burned yesterday after my 5th velashape treatment. i wish I paid more attention to your review .
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after 5th? Wow... though of course, they increase the heat level gradually with the treatments. I did 4 treatments so far, and the last one was done with increased heat, but I had nothing at all... The technician told it is impossible to burn and that she never seen it.. I am pretty slim and lately got some extra fat on my waste on the sides (O!) and I always had some "bump" above my scar after horizontal C-section. I hope that after 15 sessions I can get back to norm and even more, though so far didn't notice huge changes in cm (I am trying to button my last year pants without having a fat above the belt), but skin on my waste looks more lose (probably, fat was still reduced, but skin needs time to get back - as I am 49, I guess that won't happen fast).
I also go to a gym for some exercises, use there vibration equipment that should be good together with Velashape.
I feel I would need elastic belt on my waste constantly as I believe it would prevent a new deposition of the fat inside the loosening tissues. Didn't buy it yet, but think about.
I am trying to drink a lot, plus did some anti-toxic treatments.

I got the vouchers with discounts - $79 for 3 30-min treatments, so I took 5 of them. I think that $400 for 15 treatments is worth. Will finish the treatments by August and will tell if that really worked.
But I was been told that crunches/exercises (increase circulation and so on) and vibration are good together with Velashape
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Hi Melissa. it's good they finally decided to refund the whole amount to you. Did you get it? And did they cover your expenses for cream? How all this about the burned parts of your skin? - Could they make it to be not noticeable at all or you still have something like a scar? I also need just some area, so wonder if I should try and start...
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Thanks everyone for your comments and concern! I finally got American Laser Skincare to agree to refund the entire amount (including the $250.00 that they originally left on my card).

I used the finance company that American offered, Chase Health Advance. I have been disputing the amount with them but, they said that I need to continue to make the monthly minimal payments and handle it with the merchant directly.

So after 3 months of back and forth conversations with the corporate office, I finally recieved an email that they would refund the money on 11/04/2011. Wonder how long it is going to take to actually get it? It is 11/30/2011 today.

It is nice to hear that every experience does not result like mine did! I am still trying to get rid of the big scar. The little one just looks like a dark colored spot now. The big one is still dark pink. I did buy the online scar gel "Scarprin" and use that a couple times a day...fingers crossed!
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Yay Melissa, 

Well, I'm sorry you still have a scar, but so happy you got your money back. Persistence paid off. Please keep us updated with the scar. 

Thanks for the update, enjoy your week!


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Clayton shagal collagen plus has been helping my burn marks.
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I also got my full money back. I used the clayton shagal collagen plus and my burn marks went away.
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Contact your credit card company for a dispute tell them your story and they will basically agree or not agree to get your 250 back .. It is not to late
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Hi Melissa, Wow. So sorry for your bad experience. I can promise you this boils down to operator knowledge and expertise. I've been personally treating with VelaSmooth and VelaShape since 2005. In that time, I've never had or even seen a burn like that. Doesn't look like an RF burn, which can sometimes (rarely) occur if there isn't good contact with the skin, or not enough VelaSpray is used (burn would be smaller and more rectangular in shape). This looks more like a case of the operator leaving the smaller "VContour" head in place for too many pulses in a row, with the settings on the machine too high. Looks like a burn from the infrared lamp. The shape of the burn doesn't really match that of either head for the VelaShape. My most recent client who fits your description (athlete, runner, healthy diet & lifestyle) went from a 30.75" waist to 29.5" in 6 treatments. These results are not uncommon. Again, my sincere hopes that your burn heals well and that you are able to find a qualified and skilled practitioner to help you with reducing its appearance. For others reading this post, experience counts when finding a VelaShape practitioner!!
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I'm planning on getting the Vela Shape Treatment next month.
I'm very active-I work out about 3-4 times a week. When I received my consultation-they said that I should avoid hot showers, bikram yoga, and working out. I want to prevent the vela shape burns and was wondering if you had an advice for me. I'm planning to do my love-handle area only.

Should I avoid bikram yoga and working out during my treatments?

I would appreciate your advice and input.

Thank You.
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You only need to avoid those activities the day of your treatment. VelaShape burns are usually due to operator error/inexperience.

Many of my patients have worked out or ran before coming to see me and find the warmth from the vela soothes their sore muscles (VelaShape is actually indicated to treat sore/stiff muscles and improve circulation). You will however want to avoid hot showers, hot tub, sauna, hot yoga, et... AFTER the treatment. The next day, you should be able to return to your normal activities. Hope it helps!
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Isa8, Al would know better than I since I only received one treatment and it did not end so well...

I found that increasing my weekly workouts and limiting my sugar intake tightened up the skin on my belly from having my boy nicely....as did other area's tighten:)

My advice, save your money on this one if you are looking for long term results. Like Al said, it will feel like a warm massage if done right...and like a massage, it is short term relief between hard workouts.
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Could you tell me what type of training / certification is required to operate the VelaShape on a patient? Thank you in advance for your time and your information on this procedure if done incorrectly.
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This is a great question. I'm going to post it in our Q&A section so we can hear from the board certified doctors who volunteer on RealSelf. It usually takes 24-48 hours for answers to be posted. You can click here to check for them.


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I have had Velashape done many many time and you are going to get bruises but you should not get the burns. The technician was not experienced enough. What they are supposed to do is but lotion on and work the area in circular motions and up and down strokes. When it gets to hot you need to say so and they stop and rub the skin a little to cool off before they begin again. I have had great results with Velashape. You should find a better place to do it.

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i agree! its all about who is doing the treatments iv been using vela smooth and now vela shape for 4 years and have never burned anyone
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Hi Britt, Thanks for your comment! I have to tell you something funny that I noticed from the Vella treatment....not the burns...but, the procedure itself is a sucking and heat type of vacuum...I think the little bit of excess skin on my belly was stretched by the sucking of the machine...lol...cause it seems more noticeable to me now than before! UGH, this was a big loose loose! I will keep trying to do the ematrix on my scars but, definitely didn’t notice anything from the one try on the little one.

American Laser Skincare will not only NOT refund my money...they wont even call me back! The doctor reccommended some scar gel that is around $95.00 Ugh.
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I hate to say this but even thought they have agreed to pay your money back, you should consider getting a lawyer. It will take time but they should pay for your Dr. visits/treatment as well as whatever it takes to get rid of the scars. Clearly they are responsible and they have insurance to cover this.
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As I know, the company that provides with any services that can bring damage and further investment as the result, should have in the agreement the compensation and assure that in case of unexpected results that cause damage, they refund all money, take responsibility on them for paying for the treatment. This is ridiculous that they refunded only part after such a mess they did because of low qualification plus didn't even provide you with free treatment (cream). I guess you could sew them without a lawyer - not to invest money from your side. A Judge can see things and make decision. At least you won't lose anything more, but have a chance to get compensation for damage to your look for pretty long time, for time you have to spend for treatment and all expenses it brought (definitely cream including). I think the application fee is small in small claim courts, but the organization providing the service should be responsible for what they do and how.
I wonder if there is a statement in the agreement you signed that they are not responsible for any damage the treatment might do. Then it is useless to go to the court.
Thanks for your review, it is very helpful. Now I know that even if I decide to make such thing on me, I should find out where and who does, how long they provide people with the service and so on... Thanks again
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