How long do CoolSculpting results typically last?

I’m reading mixed reviews about how long CoolSculpting results could last. I want to get it on my love handles, but I don’t want to spend the money if it’s not going to give me lasting results.

Gargoyle12

M, 36, California

CoolSculpting is a very popular body contouring procedure because it's non-invasive and has a rapid recovery time. CoolSculpting works by freezing body fat to a temperature that kills fat cells -- but does not harm the surrounding tissue.

After the procedure, the cells which have been destroyed are gone forever.

You should be aware however that CoolSculpting only removes 25% of the fat cells at the treatment site. If you experience a period of subsequent weight gain, the remaining fat cells may expand.

CoolSculpting isn't a magic-bullet that keeps patients slender forever. It's still important for CoolSculpting patients to maintain a level body weight and a healthy lifestyle following the procedure. For those patients who do maintain a consistent body weight, the results of CoolSculpting can be extremely long lasting, if not permanent.

Dr. Robert N. Young has 1 CoolSculpting before & after:

CoolSculpting before image performed by Dr. Robert N. YoungCoolSculpting after image performed by Dr. Robert N. Young

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CoolSculpting machines by the manufacturer Zeltiq use a technique known as Cryolipolysis to freeze and destroy fat cells beneath the surface of the skin. The procedure is intended for people who are already at a healthy body weight, but want to remove stubborn fat deposits and fat bulges in specific areas where weight loss has proved difficult.

Unlike liposuction CoolSculpting is a truly non-invasive procedure requiring no incisions and leaving no scars. CoolSculpting results can be extremely long-lasting if patients maintain a healthy, consistent body weight. Fat cells which are frozen at the treated site are permanently destroyed and are naturally eliminated from the body within weeks of the procedure.

As you noted in your question, there are many online reviews which show mixed long-term CoolSculpting results. The issue in many of these cases is not the CoolSculpting procedure itself, but the failure of many patients to adhere to a healthy diet and to maintain a consistent body weight. If your body weight is very inconsistent, or you're prone to binge eating and extreme dieting, you may not be the best candidate for CoolSculpting.

During periods of mild weight gain, the remaining fat cells which were not removed by your CoolSculpting procedure can swell and increase in size. Likewise, in periods of extreme weight gain, you may actually grow new fat cells. If you exercise regularly and have good diet habits, there's a good chance the fat loss from CoolSculpting will be permanent.

I can't give you any specific advice without a personal consultation. If you're considering CoolSculpting but concerned you may not be a good candidate for the procedure, I encourage you to schedule a consultation with a board-certified plastic surgeon or dermatologist to discuss which options are best for you.

Fat cells which are frozen during the CoolSculpting procedure will die and will eventually be removed from the body via the lymphatic system. Because there's a time delay between the procedure itself and the time it takes for your body to excrete the destroyed cells, it can take up to three months to see CoolSculpting results.

A single treatment typically removes somewhere around 20% to 25% of the fat cells in the treatment site. Even after multiple treatments, some fat cells will remain. These remaining fat cells can expand if your diet changes or if you begin to put on weight.

CoolSculpting is best suited for patients who are already close to their ideal weight, but are having difficulty losing stubborn fat like belly fat or love handles. It's important to maintain a healthy diet and a consistent body weight following the CoolSculpting treatment to keep the bulges from forming and to preserve the body contouring effects. If you exercise regularly and don't put on pounds, the effects of CoolSculpting can be permanent.

Be sure to visit an experienced board-certified dermatologist or plastic surgeon for best results and best practices.

Dr. Landon Pryor has 1 CoolSculpting before & after:

CoolSculpting before image performed by Dr. Landon PryorCoolSculpting after image performed by Dr. Landon Pryor

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CoolSculpting is a non-invasive treatment to permanently destroy fat cells. Following the procedure, dead fat cells are removed permanently by the body's natural processes. The amount of time it takes to see CoolSculpting results differs from patient to patient. You may see results in as little as two weeks. For other patients, final results may not be visible for up to six months.

Keep in mind that CoolSculpting is not intended for obese patients. The best candidates for cryolipolysis are patients who are close to their ideal weight but still have some stubborn bulges where traditional weight loss techniques have been uneffective.

If you maintain a healthy lifestyle and consistent body weight following the procedure, the body contouring effects of CoolSculpting can be permanent. But for patients who put on pounds rapidly at a later date, it's possible that remaining fat deposits will swell -- or that new fat cells will form.

Always consult with a board-certified dermatologist or plastic surgeon for best results.

The reason you get conflicting answers is that the results can vary from person to person. On a cellular level, the answer is clear: Fat cells destroyed during a CoolSculpting treatment don't come back.The CoolSculpting machine works by safely freezing fat cells at the treatment site. Over the course of multiple treatments, unwanted fat cells are eventually killed off and the dead cells are eventually removed from the body via natural processes. Dead fat cells can't spring back to life. So from that perspective, CoolSculpting offers long-term body contouring results.

For many patients however, maintaining overall weight is a problem. If you're a yoyo-dieter and your overall body weight is inconsistent, you may find that the fat cells which still remain after a CoolSculpting treatment become enlarged during periods of weight gain. If you gain an excessive amount of weight following your procedure, it's possible that new fat cells will grow.
For this reason it's extremely important that patients maintain a healthy lifestyle and a relatively consistent body weight following the CoolSculpting procedure. For patients who maintain a steady body weight, the fat removal results of CoolSculpting can be permanent.

Also, keep in mind that our skin tends to loosen and lose elasticity as we age. While CoolSculpting is an excellent fat reduction procedure, it can't stave off the natural effects of aging like sagging skin.

CoolSculpting is an excellent procedure to reduce fat in areas that are resistant to diet and exercise. Once they are gone, they are gone. As long as you maintain your weight, the results will last.



CoolSculpting results last as long as you maintain your weight, since the fat destruction is permanent (the fat that is dead cannot come back to life).