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What is Cellulite?

Cellulite is a common, harmless condition of the skin. When someone has cellulite, the skin appears dimpled. The condition is most often seen in women and is typically found around the thighs, hips, buttocks and abdomen. While not harmful in any way, many seek treatment for cellulite as a cosmetic condition. Remedies can include self care techniques, massage and creams.

Signs and Symptoms of Cellulite

The signs of cellulite typically appear around the torso and tops of the legs. Symptoms of the condition include:

  • Dimples or bumps in the skin
  • An orange peel texture to the skin
  • Peaks and valleys in the skin, especially around the outer, upper thighs

What Causes Cellulite?

There is no known cause for cellulite. What is known is that the fibrous connective cords that hold the skin to the muscle beneath pull down on the skin as fat accumulates in the area. Hormones may factor in, as well as genetics. Cellulite is not caused by lack of exercise, though exercise can improve its appearance somewhat. Cellulite can appear even in people who are very fit or very slender. It is most common in women and may increase as a person ages.

How Cellulite is Treated

Hydration, massage and keeping the skin moisturized can all help somewhat with the appearance of cellulite. There are medical remedies available that have some effect on the condition, though the results can be temporary. Crolipolysis, or CoolSculpting, is one technique used; results typically appear over a course of a few months. Acoustic wave therapy is another option and involves sending waves into the body to break up the cellulite. Your doctor may also offer surgical procedures that involve subcision to separate the bands that cause cellulite.

Related Treatments

Skin Tightening Treatments

Skin tightening procedures use targeted energy to heat the layers of the skin below the epidermis. Learn More

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