Nine out of 10 women have the telltale dimpled thighs and buttocks caused by cellulite, and it doesn’t matter what kind of shape you’re in. Despite the claims made by various creams and balms, they don’t do anything to improve the appearance of cellulite because cellulite forms due to the structural makeup of female skin.
But Dr. Sobel now has a new tool called QWO™. The FDA has approved these injections for treatment of cellulite on the buttocks. We’re excited to offer these treatments at Sobel Skin as they actually break down the fibrous collagen bands that cause cellulite.
What is QWO?
QWO™ is the first and only FDA-approved injectable for the treatment of moderate to severe cellulite in the buttocks of adult women. Made from collagenase clostridium histolyticum, QWO™ uses an enzyme reaction to break down the fibrous bands that connect the skin to the lower fat layer and trap fat in pockets, creating the cottage cheese appearance of cellulite.
What causes cellulite?
Many women believe cellulite is a fat problem that can be eliminated through diet and exercise. Truth is, you can lessen the appearance of cellulite somewhat by decreasing the fat cells under your skin, but you can’t get rid of it completely no matter how slim you become.
That’s because fat isn’t the problem; the structural makeup of women’s skin is the cause. Women have connective tissue bands under their skin that are like vertical bars, trapping pockets of fat between them. The fat trapped by these tight bands pushes upward against the skin, creating lumps on the surface, next to depressions where the connective tissue is separating the fat beneath. Yes, it’s the orange peel look of cellulite. And it only gets worse as we age, and our skin thins.
This is the explanation of why skinny people can have cellulite, while heavy people may not. And men? Less than 10% have cellulite because, unlike the vertical connective tissue under women’s skin, men’s connective tissue is in an X pattern. For women, genetics plays a big role — if your mom had cellulite, you have cellulite. Hormones, aging, and weight also play a part.
How does QWO work?
As mentioned above, women develop cellulite due to the connective bands attaching the skin to the structural tissues beneath. Fat is trapped inside the pockets between the bands, and it pushes up against the surface skin, creating the signature cottage cheese appearance of cellulite.
QWO™ works in three ways to improve the appearance of cellulite:
- It releases some of those fibrous bands
- It redistributes fat cells when those bands are broken
- It stimulates the production of new amounts of collagen
On what areas can QWO be used?
The FDA has approved QWO™ for reducing the appearance of cellulite on the buttocks.
What is a QWO session like?
QWO™ is administered in a series of three treatment sessions, separated by 21 days between each session.
Dr. Sobel first marks the dimpled areas on your bottom that are to be injected. He then injects QWO™ with a very small needle. Injections do not need to be made to great depth. Topical numbing cream is not necessary. Because the buttocks area has more fat and fewer nerves, these injections are not painful. Patients have told us they hurt less than Botox® injections, which also don’t necessitate the use of topical anesthetic cream when being delivered.
QWO™ sessions are completely non-invasive and take just 10-20 minutes or so.
Is there anything I need to do to prepare for a QWO treatment?
There isn’t any preparation necessary before having a QWO™ treatment at Sobel Skin.
When will I see my results from QWO?
QWO™ is delivered in three sessions; each session is spaced three weeks apart. About one week after your third session, at roughly 10 weeks from your first session, most patients see a visible improvement and smoothing of their treated cellulite locations. Results may vary between different patients.
How long can I expect my results to last?
QWO™ is made from collagenase clostridium histolyticum. It smooths dimpling on the buttocks from cellulite by releasing the septae, the collagen bands that tether the skin to the muscle. As fat is deposited between the skin and the muscle, the telltale dimples of cellulite form due to the septae tightening the skin to the muscle between the pockets of fat.
QWO™ loosens the septae chemically. These are thought to be permanent changes in the connective bands creating the dimpling, but QWO™ is a new product, so there are not any long-term studies to know if the septae tighten again or not. Initial data supports longevity of at least a few years for the improved appearance of the patient’s cellulite.
QWO Before & After Photos
Is there recovery after having QWO injections?
You will have some soreness across the treated areas afterwards, but it is manageable with over-the-counter pain medication, so you won’t need to make any plans for recovery. After the first of your three sessions, you may have some bruising at the injection sites.
What are the potential side effects with QWO treatments?
QWO™ does have a risk of side effects. The most common side effects after QWO™ injections include bruising, pain, areas of hardness, itching, redness, discoloration, swelling, and warmth in the treated areas.
More serious side effects are possible. These include allergic (hypersensitivity) reactions, including anaphylaxis. Bruising lessens with each subsequent treatment. In clinical trials, patients did not require any downtime and any residual bruising resolved in under 21 days.
Schedule Your Consultation Today!
For more information on QWO injections and cellulite treatment by Dr. Howard Sobel, contact Sobel Skin today at 212-288-0060. Our practice serves Manhattan and the surrounding greater NYC area.