Every body is unique in the way it holds fat. Likewise, we may all lose fat differently. You may have heard that there is no way to spot reduce fatty tissue with diet and exercise. This can make specific areas, including the abdomen and thighs, difficult to improve without some assistance. In our Austin cosmetic surgery practice, we have seen excellent results with the latest non-invasive fat reduction procedures and are thrilled to offer CoolSculpting for patients who are not interested in surgical options like liposuction.
What is CoolSculpting?
CoolSculpting is an innovative, FDA-approved device that has been refining body contours for more than five years. This non-surgical procedure reduces circumference by freezing fat cells. Formally, this is known as cryolipolysis.
Who is a candidate for CoolSculpting?
CoolSculpting is an excellent treatment for just about anyone who wants to look great from every angle. Some of the characteristics that are shared by the best candidates include:
Being within 20-30 pounds of their ideal weight. Remember, Coolsculpting is a body-contouring procedure; it is not intended for weight loss. After treatment, your body will look different, but your scale will not reflect the positive change.
Struggling with stubborn fat. There is no denying that it’s much easier to accumulate fat than to get rid of it. Stubborn pockets on the thighs, midsection, even under the chin may not respond to healthy lifestyle habits. CoolSculpting is the helping hand that many people need to reach their final physical goal.
General health is good. CoolSculpting is a non-invasive procedure so has none of the risks associated with surgery, such as infection and bleeding. However, studies suggest that good general health equates to better patient outcomes from cryolipolysis.
Ability to “pinch an inch.” CoolSculpting works by affecting fat cells. For the best results to occur, there needs to be a sufficient amount of fat in the treatment area. Generally, patients who can pinch an inch or more of fat are great candidates for CoolSculpting.
Good skin elasticity. CoolSculpting is a single-purpose treatment; it reduces fat cells in a given area. Patients whose skin is loose and saggy may not be ideal candidates for CoolSculpting because a reduction in circumference without subsequent skin retraction can exacerbate the appearance of looseness.
What areas can CoolSculpting treat?
CoolSculpting was initially developed to treat stubborn belly fat. Over time, the device has expanded to address areas including:
- Back fat
- Double chin
- Inner and outer thighs
- Fat under the buttocks (banana roll)
The CoolSculpting Procedure
CoolSculpting is a convenient treatment that may take an hour or more from start to finish depending on the number of areas being treated. The procedure is conducted while you sit or lie comfortably on a treatment chair or table. Cooling panels are applied to the skin and will suction tissue up between them for efficient cooling. The effects of freezing temperatures may feel like slight pinching for a few minutes but will diminish as nerve endings numb. After this point, most patients feel only a slight tugging on their tissue from suction between the cooling panels. After the designated period of time, panels are removed, and the tissue is massaged for a few minutes.
Is CoolSculpting painful?
You may feel a slight pinching sensation at the start of treatment, but this will diminish as nerve endings numb due to the freezing temperatures. In the several years since the initial development of CoolSculpting, several revisions have been made to speed up the fat-freezing process and substantially reduced the intensity of discomfort associated with the extreme cooling of fat cells.
Approximately 90% of patients describe their treatment as well as their recovery from CoolSculpting as comfortable or only mildly uncomfortable.
Does fat freezing permanently remove fat cells?
The body metabolizes fat cells that crystallize during a round of CoolSculpting treatments. They do not grow back, just as cells do not grow back after liposuction. However, it is essential for CoolSculpting patients to manage their weight with healthy lifestyle habits. Without ongoing attention to diet and exercise, fat cells that are not removed with CoolSculpting can expand, once again increasing the circumference of any body part.
Are there any side effects after CoolSculpting treatment?
The side effects that are most commonly expressed by patients include tenderness in the treatment area and some degree of numbness that may persist for weeks.
Will I need to have multiple treatments to eliminate fat?
Studies have demonstrated that one CoolSculpting treatment can reduce fat cells in a treatment area by up to 25%. Therefore, it is possible for some people to achieve their desired outcome with just one treatment. However, additional sessions may be scheduled to reduce circumference more dramatically. Procedures are conducted a few months apart to allow time for the body to respond fully to the effects of cooling temperature. Treatment areas, such as the abdomen and thighs, can be combined into a single office visit.
Recovery after a CoolSculpting Procedure
This may be one of the best things about CoolSculpting: there is no recovery! CoolSculpting patients usually report that they can resume normal activities right after their fat-freezing sessions.
Over 6 million CoolSculpting treatments have been performed since this device was developed. It continues to be a leading body-sculpting treatment for a reason – it works! Discover what CoolSculpting can do for you. Schedule a consultation at Austin Cosmetic Surgery at 512-688-8000.
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