Coolsculpting is a medical procedure based on fat removal. It uses cooling to get rid of fat deposits around the body. In fact, it is the only non-surgical treatment that the FDA has cleared as an effective treatment for eliminating fat storage areas around the thighs, upper arms, back, and buttocks. But what are other points you should know about this treatment
1. How it all started
Coolsculpting was initially developed after scientists studied the effects of a popsicle on the cheek of a test subject. After initial swelling from the cold of the popsicle, researchers noticed that the subjects cheek was thinner, and thus the realization that cooling could be used to help contour the body and eliminate stored fat cells.
2. Who is a good candidate for coolsculpting?
An ideal candidate for coolsculpting should be close to their ideal weight before undergoing treatment. Dr. Heidi Waldorf of the Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City says that candidates should be able to pinch an inch of fat in the area of their body they want to be treated.
3. Coolsculpting is not a tool for heavy weight loss
While this may come as a surprise based on the above description of the procedure, coolsculpting is not necessarily meant for losing large amounts of weight. Contrary to invasive surgeries such as the lap band procedure or liposuction, coolsculpting is meant for people who are already in relatively good shape and close to their desired weight prior to getting the procedure. Essentially, it is a slight cosmetic procedure meant to help with mild weight loss and should be used as a supplement to a healthy diet and exercise routine rather than as a replacement for either.
4. Not meant to address loose skin
Those who want to fix sagging or excess skin, coolsculpting is not an excellent choice. Why? This is because the non-invasive procedure will not result in an excess of skin, as it is meant as a body contouring procedure rather than one meant for significant weight loss.
5. Targeted fat loss
An important thing to consider with coolsculpting is that it is meant to treat specific areas of the body, and not meant as a general, overall treatment to be used over the whole body. Patients should be advised to pick a few specific areas of the body they want to treat. This is the reason why coolsculpting has different prices for different areas of the body.
6. A comfortable alternative to invasive surgery
Invasive surgeries such as liposuction or the lap band surgery can sometimes leave patients feeling discomfort for days. Meanwhile, there are no such issues with coolsculpting, with most patients describing no pain during the process at all. Some describe a mild feeling of “pins and needles” when the applicator is first applied.
7. 20-25% reduction in fat
Coolsculpting patients can expect to see a reduction of fat by about 20-25% within a couple months of their treatment.
8. What are the side effects?
Differing from some invasive elective procedures, there are very few side effects to coolsculpting. Some patients report mild swelling or numbness for a few days after treatment, but those mild issues will correct themselves quickly.
9. How quickly will you see results?
Results can initially be seen within a month after getting the treatment. However, as the body catches up with fully ridding itself of the treated fat cells, more dramatic results can be seen after two months. It can ultimately take up to six months for the full effects of the procedure to be realized.
10. How does treatment work?
As a non-invasive procedure, the doctor will place a gel pad on the area and then affix the applicator where the fat will lay during the procedure. The treated area will be cooled quickly. The treatment should last about an hour.
11. A safe way to contour your body
Coolsculpting has some built-in features that allow for maximum safety during treatment. The applicator includes a safety mechanism that will detect if the treated area is getting too cold. Once it reaches an undesirable level of coldness, it will automatically shut down. Treatment can then be resumed as soon as the area returns to a safer temperature.
12. No downtime
Due to the ease of the procedure and the non-invasive nature, there is no need for any downtime after treatment. Patients can return to their daily activities immediately once the procedure is done.
13. Be productive during treatment
Coolsculpting is such a simple procedure that patients can even bring in work while they are being treated. They can even watch videos on their tablet or phone, listen to music, or do anything to keep themselves entertained throughout the hour-long session.
14. Proven results
Coolsculpting is a relatively new procedure, but one that is quickly gaining traction. Over the life of the procedure so far, more than 5,500 patients have taken part in clinical trials, and over 4,000,000 procedures have taken place worldwide.