We all know the frustration of battling problem areas where fat builds up and stays despite all efforts to live, eat and exercise following a healthy lifestyle. Before CoolSculpting there were few satisfactory alternatives to expensive, invasive, and temporary methods for getting rid of those immovable fat cells.
It Started with a Popsicle!
This simple, sweet treat provided a “eureka” moment for Dr. Richard Rox Anderson and Dr. Dieter Manstein of the Wellman Center of Photomedicine, affiliated with Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital.
They studied the phenomenon of “popsicle panniculitis” in children who lost cheek fat and developed dimples due to frequent consumption of popsicles. They discovered body fat dies in freezing temperatures, whereas other surrounding body tissue remains unaffected.
Their studies demonstrated:
- Up to 25% fat reduction.
- Further treatments gave similar results.
- The body naturally eliminated the dying cells.
- Blood cholesterol or lipid levels didn’t increase.
The patented technique of CoolSculpting® (fat-freezing), was born and approved by the FDA in 2010.
What is CoolSculpting?
CoolSculpting® freezes, destroys and removes fat deposits via cold temperature therapy. This innovative system by Zeltiq, now acquired by Allergan, targets fat cells with controlled cooling. They crystallize, die, get metabolized and permanently eliminated as waste matter via the lymphatic system.
The cells in the skin, nerves, vessels, and muscles compress and the skin can tighten. The result is a better contoured, sculpted and toned body. Multiple treatments on different areas of the body can be performed simultaneously.
Studies conclude CoolSculpting® has a leading edge over its competition with a 73% satisfaction and a high success rate.
CoolSculpting® is the solution for fat-removal that is unresponsive to other methods and for those who wish to avoid surgery, recovery time and high costs.
Which Areas Does CoolSculpting Treat?
The FDA cleared CoolSculpting in 2010 for fat reduction in:
- Bra line & bulge
- Double chin (submental area)
- Fat under buttocks (“banana roll”)
- Flanks or love handles
- Lower abdomen
- Outer & inner thigh
- Upper abdomen
- Upper arms
What is CoolSculpting®? The Process
The Consultation – The physician assesses each candidate and creates a customized treatment plan for their specific goals. The number of treatments required, each between 35 – 60 minutes, depends upon:
- Type of treatment area
- Amount of fat reduction required
- If multiple treatments can proceed simultaneously
- Devices and applicators to be used
The Preparation – CoolSculpting® requires little to no preparation. Basically:
- Anti-inflammatory medication (Advil and Ibuprofen) should be avoided a couple of weeks before reduce bruising.
- Wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothing.
- Bring books, laptops, and music for entertainment.
The Procedure – After completing the necessary paper-work, you will be photographed from different angles.
You will dress in disposable garments and be settled comfortably in a chair or bed. A gel-soaked pad will cover the treatment area, and the device will be positioned and turned on to reduce your tissue temperature to -10*C. You will feel mild pinching, tugging, and suction until the treatment area becomes numb.
After treatment, the device and gel-pad are removed. The technician will knead and massage the skin to return to its normal temperature, minimize swelling and aid in drainage. Massaging increases the efficacy of the treatment by 68%.
The procedure can be repeated in another area. Dr. Nazarian offers “DualSculpting,” with two machines that can treat multiple zones simultaneously.
The Recovery – As your skin warms some stinging and discomfort will be felt. The redness and soreness will disappear after 10-15 minutes. Mild pain, tenderness, swelling, numbness or bruising may last a few days/weeks.
CoolSculpting® doesn’t require downtime. Patients can resume work and all normal activities including exercises immediately.
The Results – Visible slimming and contouring of the treatment area appear in 3-4 weeks. Full results in the form of a leaner, more sculpted body are apparent in 2-3 months with full elimination of the dead cells. You will retreat, if necessary, at 2 months.
The Outlook – CoolSculpting® is a permanent procedure. The destroyed adipose cells do not regenerate or return. A few fat cells, necessary for body contouring, remain. These don’t increase in number but can increase in size if a healthy diet and lifestyle aren’t followed. To enjoy the long-term benefits of this procedure, healthy living is a must.
Is CoolSculpting® Safe?
Cryolipolysis is considered a safe, well-tolerated procedure, especially in comparison with surgery. It is suitable for all skin types even with recurrent applications. Studies have found no serious side effects including skin damage.
Who is a Good Candidate?
CoolSculpting® is intended for localized fat reduction for those who have a maximum Body Mass Index (BMI) of 30, and are within 20-30 pounds of their ideal weight. If enough skin in the treatment area can be pinched between the fingers you qualify for CoolSculpting®.
There is no age or gender restrictions for CoolSculpting®. Patients requiring small to moderate, discrete amounts of fat and cellulite removal benefit most. They should be in good health, relatively fit, with normal renal (kidney) function and no medical history of neurological or orthopedic issues. Good skin elasticity is helpful.
Who is Not a Good Candidate?
CoolSculpting® is a body contouring procedure, not a weight loss program. It does not treat obesity. CoolSculpting® should not be performed on patients suffering from any cold-induced diseases. Patients should discuss their medical history with their doctor to avoid complications.
- CoolSculpting® is FDA-approved.
- Safe and convenient with no anesthesia, incisions or downtime.
- Natural-looking, fast results.
- Performed by trained, board-certified plastic surgeons licensed aestheticians.
- CoolSculpting® is minimally-invasive.
- CoolSculpting® is affordable.
Risks & Side Effects
Side-effects are usually mild and temporary, while serious complications are rare:
- Erythema – temporary redness of the skin.
- Dysesthesia – temporary abnormal sense of touch or pain.
- Temporary firmness, hardness, and whitening in the treatment area.
- Temporary swelling or bloating.
- Temporary, localized numbness.
- Mild bruising.
- Mild to moderate pain or cramping.
- Tenderness at the site.
- Itching or tingling.
- Multiple treatments may be necessary.
- Some patients don’t see improvements or have lingering side effects.
- Older patients may see sagging skin.
- Permanent indentations or frostbite can occur with inexperienced providers.
- Paradoxical Adipose Hyperplasia (PAH) – increased fat at the site-is a rare side-effect treated by liposuction.
What Does CoolSculpting® Cost?
Cost depends on the areas, the number of sessions required, and the type and size of the applicator used. Specialists have their packages and pricing.
Hurly prices can range from:
- $750-900 for double chin treatments with a mini applicator.
- $600 to $800, for medium applicators (for thighs and love handles).
- $1500-2500 for large applicators (for abdomen).
- $2,000 to $6,000 can be expected as approximate charges for multiple, large fat bulges.
CoolSculpting® is considered a cosmetic procedure. Typically health insurance providers don’t cover it. However, individual providers may offer payment plans, discounts or special deals.
Who Provides CoolSculpting®?
Specifically trained, board-certified plastic or dermatological physicians with an official CoolSculpting® account are the go-to sources.
Copycat practitioners and machines advertise online at lower prices. These are not qualified doctors. It is dangerous and inadvisable to patronize such establishments.
At Nazarian Plastic Surgery in Beverly Hills, Dr. Sheila Nazarian, board-certified plastic surgeon & CoolSculpting® expert, and her experienced team creates individualized CoolSculpting® treatment plans that:
- Achieve natural-looking results
- Provide complete safety and care
- Achieve patients’ aesthetic goals