How It Works
CoolSculpting® uses controlled cooling to destroy fat cells. Once the cells are frozen, they die and are subsequently flushed out of the body naturally. Because fat freezes more quickly than other cells, the CoolSculpting® device can treat the target area without damaging the skin, muscle, nerves, or other surrounding tissue.
For the right candidate, CoolSculpting® can provide many important benefits:
- Nonsurgical treatment: Because CoolSculpting® is not a surgical procedure, there is no need for needles, incisions, or anesthesia. Furthermore, patients do not have to worry about scars affecting their results.
- Gradual effects: Many patients appreciate that their results appear gradually in the months after their procedure. Weight loss looks more natural and less like the result of surgery.
- Targeted treatment: Unlike other types of fat removal methods, CoolSculpting® focuses its effect on specific treatment sites, without disrupting fat cells in untreated areas.
- Increased motivation to exercise and eat healthy: After seeing the results of CoolSculpting®, many patients find they are more motivated to maintain their weight and improved appearance through healthy lifestyle choices.
Prior to treatment, you will meet with Dr. Hardy. He will ask about your treatment goals, including what areas you are hoping to slim, and how much fat tissue you would like to remove. To ensure that your expectations are realistic, he will thoroughly explain the steps and timeline of the procedure, as well as the limitations of the CoolSculpting® device.
Next, you will work with Dr. Hardy to develop a plan for each treatment site. The amount of tissue to be eliminated, its location on the body, and how well it responds to treatment will determine the number of sessions you will need, and what type of device applicators will be used.
The applicators come in two sizes: the smaller purple sculptors and the larger yellow debulkers. The sculptors are designed to treat relatively small sites while the debulkers are better suited to more extensive areas. We may recommend both, using debulkers to remove the majority of the fat tissue and sculptors to shape the remaining areas more precisely.
Once the treatment plan has been finalized, you can then schedule your first treatment session.
During the procedure, you will rest comfortably while the CoolSculpting® device is applied to the treatment areas. A cold, wet pad will be placed over the treatment area to protect the skin from direct contact with the device. The applicator cup of the CoolSculpting® machine is set directly on top of the pad. Shaped like a bowl, the device uses suction to pull the treatment area up between two panels. These panels cool the tissue, freezing the fat cells while leaving the surrounding tissues unharmed.
You may initially find the suction component of the procedure causes a pulling or pinching sensation, numbness, or general discomfort, but it quickly diminishes to a gentle tugging sensation. Similarly, the target area often feels very cold at first, but usually goes numb within a few minutes.
Once accustomed to the sensation of the device, most patients are comfortable enough to focus on other tasks. Depending on your preference, you can read, watch a video, use a mobile device, or simply rest during treatment.
The length of a session depends on the size and number of areas being treated, but most sessions last about one hour per treatment site. Once complete, we will gently remove the applicator cup and massage the area until it is completely unfrozen. Since the procedure is non-invasive, you may return to your regular activities immediately afterward.
CoolSculpting® is a low-risk procedure. The safety and effectiveness have been thoroughly demonstrated with more than one million procedures successfully performed worldwide. In the days after treatment, there is a chance of temporary swelling, bruising, redness, numbness, itching, cramping, bloating, or discomfort.
The persistence of these aftereffects usually depends on the extent of treatment. Dr. Hardy is a qualified, board-certified provider CoolSculpting® services. Choosing a credentialed practitioner is the best way for patients themselves to minimize risks.