CoolSculpting is a non-surgical treatment that was approved by the Food and Drug Administration in September 2010 for treating love handles and back fat, and in May of this year, doctors also got the green light for using the device on stubborn abdominal fat – meaning no more muffin top either! So now that I’ve got your attention, here’s the skinny:
What is it?
CoolSculpting is a machine manufactured by Zeltiq that uses a technique called cryolipolysis to freeze fat cells and eliminate fat where used. It’s administered in the office of a cosmetic dermatologist or plastic surgeon without anesthesia, knives or scarring. It’s applied in a controlled area, crystalizing and killing the fat cells lurking underneath the skin’s surface. Through your body’s natural elimination process, these cells are carried away.
What doesn’t it do?
Unfortunately, CoolSculpting treatments can’t be substituted for physical activity and a balanced diet to achieve weight loss. Eliminating saggy skin and cellulite will require other types of treatment, if necessary.
Who can benefit from the treatment?
CoolSculpting works best for patients in relatively good shape who need minimal fat reduction to remove unwanted lumps and bumps without liposuction.
Does it hurt?
The technician takes the fatty area and sandwiches it between two cooling panels, creating a sensation like someone is pulling and pinching it. It will cause an initial freezing sensation that may feel uncomfortable, but shouldn’t be painful. You may notice temporary numbness, tingling or bruising after your treatment.
How long does it take?
The treatment itself takes about an hour. You’ll probably see a noticeable reduction in fat within three weeks after just one treatment if you’re like most patients, but over a period of two to four months, you’ll see better and better results. The final outcome is achieved as your body completely disposes of the killed fat cells. CoolSculpting is so non-invasive that it can be done as a “lunchtime procedure” allowing you to return to work immediately, if necessary.
How long does it last?
With healthy habits and lifestyle, you should expect long-term results with CoolSculpting. Of course, other fat cells on your body can still accommodate fat if you’re consuming more calories than you burning.
What is the cost?
Each area of the body you treat with CoolSculpting costs around $1,500, and may vary slightly based on physician and your geographical area.
What makes it different than liposuction?
Unlike liposuction, CoolSculpting is a non-invasive and non-surgical. Those who must treat a larger area or seek more a more dramatic outcome may find liposuction more effective.