Melting fat: Modeling the Effects of RFAL using Invasix BodyTiteTM system

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Radio-Frequency Assisted Liposuction (RFAL) is a recent technique that shows promise compared to traditional procedures in terms of safety, recovery times, and results. Currently, however, there lacks an accurate computational model that can be used by researchers to study the efficacy of this technology with optimal parameters. Here we focus on the use of a novel RFAL device (the Invasix BodyTite™) that consists of a RF-emitting, fat-aspirating probe and a grounding sensor. A 3D COMSOL model was implemented with the bio-heat equation coupled with a joule heating mechanism in order to simulate the temperature and fat aspiration profiles, allowing analysis of varying levels of output power and probe velocity. The model had mean dimensions of skin, adipose, and muscle thickness proportional to measurements of arms and thighs found in literature, while the material properties were collected as statistical mean from a compilation of online databases and literature sources. Verification was conducted throughout each step of the design process through temperature and heat source graphs, and a mesh convergence was reached at a quality of higher than 30,000 elements. The cumulative fat aspiration is calculated with a volume integration of nodes that reach above the fat melting temperature of 316 K. The total fat volumes extrapolated from our model, within the devices range of power, are compliant with clinically observed results from literature. Furthermore, a sensitivity analysis of key fat parameters showed density, heat capacity, and thermal conductivity to have the largest effect on cumulative fat aspiration. To reach the original objective of assisting researchers with a computational mode, an optimization of probe velocity to cumulative fat aspiration was conducted. The optimal probe velocity for maximum rate of fat aspiration was found to be 3 cm/s.
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Computer-Aided Engineering; Biomedical Processes
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