Body contouring is nothing new, though the numerous new devices we have today might make it seem that way. Not long ago, if you wanted to eliminate stubborn pockets of fatty tissue, your best way to do it would be with liposuction. Even in the plastic surgery arena, there have been improvements in technique that lead to better results and a shorter recovery period. Still, the existence of fat-reducing treatments like CoolSculpting has made some people believe that there is an alternative to liposuction. We need to look at this more closely.
CoolSculpting is a treatment we offer in our Columbus and Pittsburgh area offices, so we are well aware of its many benefits. This technique does not require anesthesia or recovery, but it does take time to see results. As it sounds, CoolSculpting eliminates fat cells by freezing them. Literally. When fat cells are cooled to a precise temperature, they crystallize. These crystallized cells look damaged to the body’s immune system, so they are flushed out through the lymph system. Liposuction does require incisions and anesthesia (possibly only local). There is a recovery time of a week to 10 days and some swelling and bruising that will continue after that. When we look at the different methods side-by-side, CoolSculpting looks more like an apple to an orange than a clear alternative to liposuction.
Here’s What You Need to Ask Yourself
If you want to accentuate the curves of your body by removing excess fat cells, there are a few details you’ll need to look at:
Where is the Problem?
Excess fat can accumulate nearly anywhere on the body. CoolSculpting is a great choice for removing small areas of fat cells (like the size of a stick of butter) from regions such as the lower abdomen, flanks, thighs, chin, and backs of the arms. The process may even work for bra fat on the back. Liposuction can treat the same areas and also the upper abdomen, knees and ankles, breasts, and even the cheeks.
How Much “Problem” is There?
Maybe you have only a little fatty tissue on your abdomen, but you also have some fat deposits on your outer thighs or buttocks or hips. Maybe each of these areas could use a little refining. To treat them all with CoolSculpting might become incredibly tedious since only one or two panels can be used at a time.
What is My End-Goal?
When the goal is as simple as “less fat, please,” CoolSculpting may be a fine choice. When there is a desire for true sculpting, like six-pack shadow sculpting, liposuction may be a better option.
We’re here to help you get the body you want in the way you want it. Contact a Skin Center near you to schedule your consultation.