Everything you need to know about this procedure :) - Torrance, CA

I survived! It has officially been a little over...

I survived! It has officially been a little over 24 hours since my procedure. I’m going to go in depth as far as what these past 24 hours have been like but here’s some info about me first:

29 years old, 105 lbs, 5'4, "moderate" level of cellulite. Cellulite since the age of 11.
Area treated: back of both thighs, from just above my knee all the way up to just below my butt
Time of procedure with laser: 1 hour and 15 minutes (from the time Dr. Petti started and finished)
Other treatments tried: lipodissolve in 2007 (really painful injections that were supposed to help treat cellulite..so much for that!), creams, massages, etc.

So yesterday at 8AM I checked into Dr. Petti's office for my procedure. I was on her "operating table" by 9:15AM, and they started treating me around 9:45AM (it takes around half hour to prep the area, let the vicodin sink in, etc). I was done at 11AM. Although I did not fall asleep during the procedure, I was extremely relaxed, but aware of what was going on at the same time. Also, I should mention that I started getting a sore throat/minor body aches the day before my procedure (cold/flu, probably from the stress of everything) but it had no affect on anything at all.

The first 15-20 minutes were the toughest/most painful part of the procedure, which was when Dr. Petti began to numb the area. I wouldn't exactly call it a 10 on the pain scale but maybe a 7 during a few moments. I have a low tolerance to pain though and am a complete wimp when it comes to anything painful. After the numbing part was through though, I was a happy camper, and the "laser" part felt like a massage to me lol..I’m not kidding haha. And that of course is the bulk of the procedure, so I was extremely content with how easy the procedure part ended up being.

Not to mention..Dr. Petti was so gentle and caring throughout the entire procedure..as were her nurse (Jennifer) and her tech (Sharon). All three of them were so kind to me from start to finish, even when I started getting choked up a little when I said how much I hated being in a bathing suit or anything that showed my legs because of my cellulite. They were so sweet and so caring, I cannot tell you how blessed I feel that they were the ones looking after me before/during/and after my procedure. It was kind of fun hanging out with them haha.

My boyfriend picked me up, and still no pain at all yet. He set me up on his bed where I ate and slept. I also recommend by the way bringing crackers, a sandwich and some other snacks with you to eat right before the procedure. I had breakfast, but by the time 9am hit, I was pretty hungry and did not want to take the vicodin on an empty stomach. My stomach is very weak and get nauseated quite easily though, so I know for me I need to have a decent amount of food in it in order to prevent any nausea. And as soon as my boyfriend picked me up after the procedure, I chowed down on another sandwich lol and ate a bunch more once I got to his place. Also, I have been LIVING off of pineapple juice for over a week now, so I drank a bunch of that too. And had a really big dinner.

Dr. Petti called me in the evening to check up on me and I was feeling great. At around 8pm though, that’s when I started experiencing my first bit of pain while walking around the house. I couldn’t really walk anywhere without me feeling A LOT of pain in my thighs. But the pain was very minimal, if not non-existent while I was laying down or sitting…so I tried doing that as much as possible.

The second problem that came up yesterday night was when I realized I needed to go to the “bathroom” after eating all that food lol. Going pee isn’t that much of a problem through that hole in the garment (although the only way I can do it is squatting because I don’t want to get anything on the garment..yet another hassle I guess). But anyway, for the life of me, I couldn’t bring myself to go to the bathroom through that hole in the back while sitting down. :( I was too afraid it would get the garment dirty, but I also didn't want to pull it down at all since I remembered Dr. Petti saying not to remove the garment at all. So needless to say, I never went to the bathroom that night. Dr. Petti mentioned today though that it’s ok to pull it down a little, and man that made it so much easier! For those of you guys getting cellulaze done to your thighs AND butt..I’m not sure how that would all work. Also, getting front and back of thighs done also seems like it would be extremely difficult to go to the bathroom as well (number one) since I have to squat when I go. I feel for you guys!

And lastly, I had a similar problem like the previous poster LaurelC did. For some reason, I started crying uncontrollably and couldn’t stop, for about 15 minutes. Maybe it was the vicodin in combination with my level of sadness for having to go through this procedure to begin with, and me feeling hopeless about my bathroom situation lol. Like I said before though, I’m a total wuss, and kind of overly emotional at times.

24 hours later though, I am feeling pretty dang good! :) Dr. Petti saw me this morning and although I am very swollen, she was pretty surprised by how little bruising I had. Pinneaple and those bromelain supplements really work I guess! She also removed the little drainage sheets I had underneath the garment and on them was a little bit of watered down blood, but that was it. I had no leaking through my garment except for a little bit of blood on the back of it, but that was all. No crazy amount fluid or anything like some of the other posters.

Dr. Petti, did end up using foam pads and she put them underneath my garment, and she said they are for “smoothing out the skin and contouring it" not for the purpose of soaking up any drainage. She said I should rotate them from horizontal to vertical and back and forth 3 times a day. I felt soooo much better with the pads in though! I feel like they allow my thighs to move less when I walk and also provide additional padding when sitting down/laying down. And 24 hours later, I also have permission to take a shower, but I think I’m going to hold off on that until tomorrow or maybe even the day after that because it is extremely painful putting the garment back on once it’s taken off. And as far as me rotating the pads..haven't really gotten to that yet lol.

So although as of right now I am totally walking like I'm 99 and I feel like I’m in a world of pain when I have to walk around..when sitting/laying down I hardly feel anything at all! Just a little bit of tightness around my legs, but that is it. Another note: unless I was hopped up on pain meds, there is no way I’d be able to go to work today based off of how painful it is to walk around. So hopefully you guys can take a few days off if you are planning on getting this procedure done, because I definitely wouldn’t say you can go to work the same day or the next day without being extremely uncomfortable.

So anyway, those are the pros and cons in a nutshell. I have my next follow up appointment in 7 days, next Thursday May 24th but I will keep you guys in the loop if I learn anything new or my status changes. Much love!

It has almost been a week since I had the...

It has almost been a week since I had the procedure. I know I mentioned in my last post that the bruising was minimal; for some reason though, the bruising got worse after I passed the 1-2 day mark. But now I can say it appears to be getting a little less purple. I'm still very bruised though, even almost a week out. The swelling has started to go down as of yesterday but it's still very swollen and tender. Sometimes I feel an odd pinching sensation in my inner thigh out of nowhere..not sure what that's all about.

All in all though, I would say that the worst pain is the first 3 days, but after that it gets better with each day. One good thing about the swelling going down is that the garment isn't so terribly tight anymore, so I can sleep a little more comfortably now. Your legs will feel really tight and itchy after this procedure though, so don't expect to get a good night sleep. I honestly have not had a sound night of sleep since I've gotten this done, and normally I am a very good/deep sleeper.

I've been looking at my legs through the garment though, and in the past there would be a bunch of horizontal lines/ridges that would be visible through pants, but as of right now there aren't any. I know I am still very swollen though so that's not really evidence of anything, but just hoping that my thighs will look like that once the swelling goes down.

So all in all, I guess you could say I do see a difference, but only because of the swelling. If definitely has been a painful experience and inconvenient in a lot of ways..I kind of wish I got this done during the colder months because it has been too hot lately to be in this garment! Anyway just glad that the worst of it seems to be behind me now. Hope that helps and I'll update you guys again once I talk to the doc in a few days :)

Saw Dr. Petti today! I'm 8 days post procedure and...

Saw Dr. Petti today! I'm 8 days post procedure and feeling great!! My swelling is at a minimum now, bruising has started to yellow in certain places, and I should be able to resume exercise very very soon! Dr. Petti showed me enlarged before/after pics of a patient with a similar body type to LAURELC (realself.com poster), and one month out, it looked AMAZING! I'm told to massage the area when the bruising turns yellowish/green with the Clarsonic massager that can be purchased on amazon.com ($175), and that is all.

I will post up pics for you guys at the 2 week mark, and then again at the one month mark. Hope everyone has a great memorial day weekend!

Hey everyone, I have been ill so that's why I...

Hey everyone, I have been ill so that's why I haven't been able to update.

So it has been over 3 months since I had my procedure and the back of my legs still hurt a little, and there is a dark looking tint to them still as well. Just looks like the back of my legs are bruised still.

As far as cellulite, there has been a reduction, but I still have it. Again, I'm going to say maybe 50-60% less. Hope that helps and good luck to everyone with what they decide!
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon

Excellent in all regards..if I could give Dr. Petti and her staff 10 stars I would. She is the most caring, sweet, genuine doctor in the world, and so is her staff. I think someone posted negatively on Dr. Petti on here about a consultation (or Dr. Petti's staff?) but I honestly don't know how that could even be possible...everything from my consultation to the procedure couldn't have been better. I would not want to go with any other doc but her, and I'm so grateful that I was able to have her as my doctor.

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
5 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
5 out of 5 stars Wait times
Was this review helpful? 4 others found this helpful

Comments (38)

Sort by

Hey ihatecellulite, how is it looking now? Have you had more improvement from 50-60% now that you are past the 6 months mark? Has this procedure been worth it for you? if you have pictures, we would LOVE to see them :) Please update
  • Reply
Get well soon!!!
  • Reply

Sorry to hear you have been ill, ihatecellulite. So, I know you still have another 3 months in the 3-6month window, but I'm curious if things didn't improve any more and a 50-60% reduction was the final result would you do it again, or do you not think that amount of improvement was worth the discomfort, downtime, and money?

  • Reply
Thanks for your review! I have my Cellulaze (and some Smart Lipo) scheduled with Dr. Petti October 1st! I would be happy with a 50-60% reduction, especially on the front of my thighs, which has made it impossible to wear a skirt above my knees. I really liked Dr. Petti and her staff. I didn't feel like I was getting a hard sell at all. I called the office and emailed a million times before finally scheduling. I'll be posting my review, too!
  • Reply

Congrats ihatecellulite!  I think 50-60% improvement is GREAT and you still have room to go with the coming months!   Lotsalipo, I think that anything above 50% is amazing.   Seriously, if someone said I can give you 50% less cellulite in 3 months, you wouldn't have believed them.   This is something that many of us have been cursed with for years - and 50% improvement is significant!   We have to set realistic expectations.    We all want perfection- but that's just not realistic sadly!   But we can make ourselves better and be grateful for all we do have.    It's a risk that it will work for a person's particular body type.  I just knew that I was willing to try it for the possibility of having improvement.  Turned out, I was one of the lucky ones.    But this website and this little community is so great.  I felt so supported and loved by all these strangers- but we all shared a common goal and there is nothing like girl love to get your through rough times.   Like my friend on here Aging Maven, we take risks and in the end, need to be grateful for what we do have in life, not focus on what we don't have.    I wish you loads of luck Lotsalipo.   It's a tough road in the beginning healing, but hopefully you will achieve a nice level of improvement that will have you in those shorter skirts come New Years Eve!  xoxo
  • Reply
Hi you are alittle over 2 months since your surgery! How are you feeling? How is it looking? Are you 100% back to normal. If so at what point would you say you were when you started feeling normal again? The big question - would you do it all over again? I actually have an appointment with Dr. Petti this week and I am excited to hear what she says.
  • Reply
Hey.... Hope all is well and you get maximum results.....please update us...thanx
  • Reply
Hi all I need some help! Is it still normal to be swollen at the 3 week mark? My one side leg like saddle bag side of thigh is much more swollen than my other. I'm getting worried. I just want to know if it's normal to still see swelling. I do think my dimples are improving actually today but the slight bruising make the discoloration tough to tell and have a nice even look.

I'm taking bromelin and arnica. Let me know I'm going to dr D Thursday for my 4 weeks so I'm hoping this swelling goes down!

Any advice would be great.

I also think that the antibiotic Keflex really messed with me. My stomach has been crazy for 3 weeks :(
  • Reply
Ha I know what you mean! Just wish I could fast forward life right now :) def make a post so I can follow you and let me know when you start seeing results. I'm pretty sure it will happen for you :)

Sounds like your cellulite was pretty minor so maybe that's why you can't quite tell?
  • Reply
Hey lady!

I am 3 weeks out today and personally really don't see an improvement. I still have bruising and minor swelling more so on the back of my legs which might just take longer to heal.

I'm really discouraged though since minor was grade 2 small I expected to see immediate results. I'm going to him on June 14th for my 4 weeks so I might schedule my smooth shapes then. I just don't know what to think :(

I know patience is key. I'm also been under a lot of personal
stress so I'm sure this is adding to it. And the garment has been so tight on my stomach and hot I just couldn't take it anymore.

Especially when you don't see results it's discouraging!

Just going to hang in there I promise to make a post soon, life has just been nutty!
  • Reply
Almost famous: what's the latest? Do you have a post on here by the way? Let me know if you do and if you decided to do the smooth shape? I don't want to pay anything more so I am just going to wait it out.

As for my progress, I am 3 weeks out and unfortunately after the swelling went down I still have about 50% of my cellulite. But at least it has improved somewhat.

I still wear the garment every night because when I don't wear it I wake up sore. I feel like I go 2 Steps forward then 1 step backward lol..I guess I need to focus on the improvement I see and realize that I need to be patient, and do a final assessment at 3 months as to whether or not this was procedure was worth it.

Time will tell ladies! August 15th is the 3 month mark for me..it sounds so far away :(
  • Reply

What??? You are three weeks out and have 50% improvement???  That's awesome!  Why are you bummed?!?!?!    We need to be realistic- my best friend (who is the only person I told about this) reminded me that I told her before the procedure that if I got 50-75% improvement I'd be so happy.  I'm at that point now.   And I was getting greedy and wanting more.  We need to be realistic.  If we had it bad to start out with, 50-75% improvement is pretty darn good.   And I'm only at 5 1/2 weeks.  We all knew going into this that 3-6 months is the place to get to, with continued improvement over time.   Not to mention I am 43.  I have 43 year old skin.  I'll never have my 22 yr old body back (and man, was it fabulous!).  All I can do is take care of what I got.   So focus on that 50% improvement!!!

Keep your chin up ihatecellulite.  50% improvement after 3 weeks I think is pretty darn good!  

Kiss, LC
  • Reply
I'm in my 1 week post op as well, much of my bruising and swelling is going down I'm going for 1 post op apt now. I still see the 2 dimples on my butt that I hate ... They're going to do 2 smooth shape treatments on me. I'm waiting to go in to see what they say. I know 1 week is early but I really did this for just 2 dimples so they better go away. It's hard to tell with some bruising and swelling still but ugh! This better work. I wear the full garment and topifoam 24/7 and take lots of bromelin arnica vitamins and water. I use arica gel and vit e oil as well. I know it's early but i just need to know this works!

So maybe I should wait on smoothe shape? They said they give me 2 sessions and I know the OR nurse had it and looked amazing in 2 weeks!!!

I'll see what they say when I go in!

Gotta get more topifoam I love it!

Just need some encouragement
  • Reply
Oh and the foam pads by the way are a Mentor product, which means they are uber expensive..hence why most docs don't use them on their patients.

Oh and I forgot to mention my tidbit on the garment..go with a garment that is comfortable and clips in so that you don't have the issues LaurelC did with the zipper digging into your skin. Mine is called Veronique.
  • Reply

Thanks for sharing your thoughts on all of this ihatecellulite. I would love it if you would post a picture of the garment you used so we can see what the clips look like as opposed to the zipper.

Hope your healing continues to go great for you!!

  • Reply
Thanks Megan, I'm sorry I haven't had the time to post pics of the garment but I will when I get the chance :)

What are your thoughts on everything so far..are you going to get this procedure done?
  • Reply
Did you buy your garment or is it the one you left with after the procedure? My consult with Dr. Petti is tomorrow and after hearing everyone I am more realistic than I was when I first made it a month ago! I think we all want the " air brushed look" of models when they don't even look like that! At least I do! : (
  • Reply
Thank you Megan, just updated after my follow up appointment with Dr. Petti, it's amazing how quickly the body can heal! Every 24 hours I feel 10 times better than I did before, I feel so lucky to have her as my doc..she really knows what she's doing.

Like wearing those foam pads..is a must! Yes they might be just a little bulkier than wearing the garment alone, but you need the extra cushioning after this procedure. When I have a bruise, the last thing I want to do is keep traumatizing it/putting excess pressure on it..but that's what we're all doing when we sit/lay down. So people definitely need to get the foam pads and wear them for a week post procedure. If your doc doesn't have them and/or isn't using them on you, that is not cool! Why would a doc not have them? Well because they are expensive, and just another cost they would have to worry about that can be avoided.

Yes, the pads need to be alternated which is a pain but definitely worth it in the long run for optimal healing.

Secondly, exercising and massage in the first 1-2 weeks is absolutely insane! If it's bruised, and it's jiggling and still hurts, don't do it.

Thirdly, if your doc recommends additional procedures immediately after your treatment, please don't do it. We all know that it takes 3-6 months to see true improvement..all we need to see results after Cellulaze is time.

Ok I think that's all I have to say for now! ;0
  • Reply

Good to hear an update from you ihatecellulite! I'm glad to hear the swelling is going down for you & making the garment at least a bit more tolerable.

Looking forward to hearing more & hope your healing continues at a quick pace!!

  • Reply
thanks shortsplease :) Keep me in the loop too, will continue to check your updates!
  • Reply
ihatecellulite...Congratulations!!! You are tiny :) I know how you feel about feeling guilty. Especially when I can't really capture what it looks like in pics. Good luck honey. Keep me posted!
  • Reply
Haha thx LaurelC you are so sweet! You gotta keep in mind tho that pics dont pick it up that well..believe me, it's there! I definitely feel guilty for getting the procedure done though because I know there's more to life than what a person's legs look like or looks in general..but my problem with this goes back to the age of 11 when I started getting it and my mom would point it out as well as my brother. I know my mom would tell me about it to try and help me, because I wasn't the healthiest eater and she thought cellulite was caused by junk food and not drinking enough water. I guess those comments really hurt me at my core though and so by the time I was 17 I didn't want to be in a bathing suit around anyone..and forget about wearing shorts! Ridiculous, I know, but it is what it is.

Thanks for the info on going to the bathroom tho lol, I definitely have to pull the garment down for #2..but I guess that's just a minor inconvenience. Also jealous that your garment is shorter..that would help with my clothing situation but I guess I'm not going anywhere anyway.

So no foam pads for u huh? U should post a pic of u in ur garment..I wanna see it! (or email it to me!). And I just noticed you are in los angeles as well..that's crazy, all along for some reason I thought u and your doc were out in Texas lol. Do you know how many procedures your doc has done? And how are u doing since the whole nordy's thing..I was seriously worried about you after reading that :( Let me know girlie!
  • Reply
Ihatecellulite: hi mama! yes, I totally felt the best when I was not moving and I squat to pee too b/c it's less painful than sitting down. I have no problem going #2 - my crotchess part is so big! Also, mine garment is black and above my knees - yours is very long! And dude, those pictures are so flattering - I can't see any cellulite at ALL! I have no idea how to compare to your after! You're so skinny too! Are you one of those girls who eat everything and are a stick?! Keep us updated. (and cute undies BTW) xx LC
  • Reply
Thank you spin chick! I think u will be very happy with Dr. Petti..but when it comes down to it, what matters most are the results. So time will tell :)

Fazhionista: thanks for keeping me in your thoughts! Dr. Petti was the only doc I saw and in my opinion, the only doc I needed to see. I definitely was hoping for a better price though, but even so I did not feel the need to shop around and do other consults. When it comes to something this risky, it's always best to go with someone you have faith in. Dr. Petti is kind, I believe her to be trustworthy, and as far as I know she has done the greatest number of these cellulaze procedures in the los angeles area. Hope that's helpful! :)
  • Reply
Ihatecellulite, thank you for the detailed review and pictures! It is very helpful! I was wondering that the compression garment looked like. It is much longer than I imagined! Interesting that when you sit down you do not feel any pain....I would think pressure on the area treated would cause pain, but since you have minimal bruising that probably helps.

I have a consult with Dr. Petti in June. Did you have consults with anyone else? Looking forward to hearing about the next week for you and your after pictures! Hope you have a speedy recovery!
  • Reply