Treatment Options for Getting Rid of the Dreaded Muffin Top

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Are you tired of your clothes not fitting properly and dealing with that roll of fat spilling out over your pants? For some people, diet and exercise take care of the problem, while others can’t seem to get rid of it no matter how many sit-ups or abdominal exercises they do.

Compression tops and shape wear such as Spanx can temporarily help, but there are some simple surgical and non-surgical procedures that offer more long-term solutions. While there are many body contouring solutions currently on the market we will cover today’s most popular treatments in this article. 

Non-Surgical Options


CoolSculpting is a gentle and effective non-surgical treatment that reduces stubborn fat in targeted areas of the body. CoolSculpting works best on people who already live a healthy lifestyle, but just need some extra help in certain targeted areas. For example, we see a lot of women who after pregnancy have a difficult time getting rid of their “belly pooch”. CoolSculpting can easily get rid of that extra belly fat.

CoolSculpting works by using a precisely controlled technology that targets, cools and eliminates fat cells via a gradual and natural process. It does this without causing any damage to surrounding skin and tissue, just fat tissue is targeted. The results are noticeable and very natural looking in terms of fat reduction in the treated areas.

CoolSculpting is a completely non-invasive procedure; no needles, pain medications or extensive recovery time is necessary. The procedure has been approved by the FDA to reduce fat in the abdomen as well as the love handle area or flank.


Zerona is an ideal option for people who do not currently live a healthy lifestyle but want to get a jump start to getting on the right track. It is a non-invasive body-slimming system that is designed to contour the body and remove fat with no pain, surgery or needles. Basically, Zerona uses a small laser over a series of treatments to break up adipose tissue (fat cells) which is later extracted from during the bodies normal detox processes. The system allows for the continuance of daily activity with no interruptions.

Zerona does require several treatments; most patients undergo at least nine treatments occurring every other day. However, the results are very real. Patients start seeing a difference in their looks and their clothes start getting looser. We’ve seen many patients build confidence and momentum after this first round of results leading them to continue a healthy lifestyle.

Surgical Options


Liposuction surgery is designed for those who may have very specific troublesome areas of fat deposits who have tried unsuccessfully to lose the fat through other methods like diet and exercise.

Traditional liposuction begins with the application of a diluted anesthetic that is injected into the area. The next phase involves a small suction tube that is inserted through a small incision placed in an inconspicuous area. A high-pressure vacuum is then used to extract the fat cells from the body. This process results in a re-sculpting of the body.


SmartLipo is great for patients that need specific areas of their body to be reshaped, a common issue for people who have experienced significant weight loss, pregnancy, or aging. For example we see many patients who develop “saddle bags” or pouches of excess fat on their hips. With SmartLipo we can reshape the body by removing that excess fat on the outer thighs. The results can really change people’s lives; clothes fit better and patients have a renewed confidence and positive body image.

Today’s smartlipo technology has drastically improved traditional liposuction by utilizing a laser to heat the fat under the skin. This technologically advanced laser causes fat cells to rupture and loosen, making fat matter easier to remove with the suction cannula. At the same time the laser stimulates new collagen development resulting in a tightening of the skin.

If you are considering any of these treatments, I recommend that you research each procedure to determine which option is right for you. No procedure is “one size fits all”, it’s extremely important to do what works for your body type and specific issues. A highly skilled dermatologist or plastic surgeon will be able to recommend the most effective treatment.

 This post is written by Kelly Wala, RN BSN. As an Aesthetic Nurse Specialist Kelly currently practices various body contouring, facial injectable, laser and light therapy, and skin care treatments at Austin, Texas based Westlake Dermatology.

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