Conference Coverage

One treatment with a 1,060-nm diode laser helped reduce unwanted fat



A single treatment with a commercially available 1,060-nm diode laser that features integrated skin cooling was found to be safe and effective for the reduction of unwanted fat of the abdomen and flanks, a small single-center study showed.

Dr. Alison S. Kang dermatologist, Laser & Skin Surgery Center of Northern California, Sacramento.

Dr. Alison S. Kang

Nonsurgical fat reduction was the third-most common nonsurgical aesthetic procedure in the United States in 2018 and includes lasers, high-intensity focused ultrasound, radiofrequency, photobiomodulation therapy, and cryolipolysis, according to 2018 data from the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery.

“Our study is unique because we used a 1,060-nm diode laser with integrated skin cooling to evaluate the efficacy and safety of its use for the reduction of unwanted fat of the abdomen and flanks,” lead study author Alison S. Kang, MD, told this news organization following the annual conference of the American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery, where the data were presented. “A 1,060-nm laser works by delivering controlled thermal energy between 42 °C and 47 °C, temperatures at which adipocytes are permanently destroyed,” she explained.

Dr. Kang and Suzanne Kilmer, MD, both of the Laser & Skin Surgery Center of Northern California, Sacramento, enrolled 28 women and 2 men into the study. Each study participant received a single treatment with Venus Bliss, a 1,060-nm diode laser with four laser applicators and a built-in skin-cooling mechanism. Half received treatment of the flanks delivered at up to 1.4 watts per cm2 on each diode for 25 minutes, while the other 15 received treatment of the abdomen with the same energy settings. Photos and ultrasound images were taken at baseline, 6 weeks, and 12 weeks, and the investigators administered a satisfaction questionnaire upon study exit. The primary endpoint was efficacy, defined as the percentage of correctly identified posttreatment photographs by three blinded reviewers (one plastic surgeon and two dermatologists). Secondary endpoints of interest were change in adipose thickness on ultrasound, subject satisfaction, and adverse events.

After losing 1 patient to follow-up, 29 completed the study. Dr. Kang reported that the blinded evaluators could identify the pretreatment image, compared with the posttreatment image in an average of 67% of patients. Between baseline and 12 weeks, the ultrasound images showed an average reduction in the adipose layer of 9% on the abdomen and 7% on the flank, while the average self-reported pain score based on the Wong-Baker FACES Pain Rating Scale was 2 out of 10 among those in the abdomen treatment group and 2.6 out of 10 among those in the flank treatment group.

In addition, 76% of subjects stated they were “satisfied” to “very satisfied” with the treatment, and 79% stated that they would recommend this treatment to a friend. The most common posttreatment responses in both groups were erythema and trace edema, but no serious or permanent adverse events were observed.

Dr. Kang acknowledged certain limitations of the study, including its small sample size. “Only one treatment was performed in our study, so it is unclear if multiple treatments will improve efficacy or if multiple treatments will have no effect on efficacy,” she said.

The work won a “best of session early career-clinical” abstract award from the ASLMS.

The study was funded by Venus Concept, the manufacturer of the Venus Bliss laser. Dr. Kang reported having no relevant financial disclosures. Dr. Kilmer has received grants and honoraria from Venus Concept.

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