In this article, we will discuss Cryolipolysis, commonly known as cool sculpting or fat freezing; whether the hype around this non-surgical fat reduction procedure is justified, and what the potential side effects are.
Fat Freezing, also referred to as cool sculpting or cryolipolysis, is a non-invasive treatment that was originally approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in 2010. This Instagram-famous, Kardashian and Real Housewife approved treatment, came about by accident in 1970 following a scientific study that found children who sucked on frozen popsicles had fat cells die in their cheeks. Doctors capitalised on this discovery, and created a machine that reduced fat by freezing it. The cooling method was modified using a device that suctioned up body fat tissue and exposed it to a very low temperature to freeze the fat cells without affecting connecting tissue including the skin (protected by a glycerin pad). Fat freezing is now commonly used to treat fat in the chin, knees, thighs, abdomen, bra and back areas, flanks, underneath the buttocks and arms.
The first misconception that is important to address is that Fat Freezing is a weight-loss procedure. It is actually best suited to those who are already healthy, but have stubborn, problem areas they can’t seem to shift despite a good diet and exercise routine. Depending on the technology used and the patient’s unique body make-up, the results will vary.
At Body Catalyst, we have tested many technologies and have landed on the most advanced and performant medical grade technology available on the market: CLATUU 360, as it targets the fat with large handpieces on a 360 degree angle, giving the best coverage of the area, and by far the best results. It’s important to be aware that different fat freezing technologies will give different results. “How do I look out for them?” I hear you say. Firstly, you should find out if the device used for treatments is the latest medical grade technology available on the market, as some companies may use older versions that are not as performant. Utilising the best technology is expensive, but we feel it is our duty to offer our clients the best treatment outcome. With that comes a continual updating of technology to keep up with innovation in the non-surgical space. Another element to look out for is the type of paddles or headpieces used to perform treatments to ensure maximum coverage of the treated area for optimum results.
The price of treatments should be another key indicator, and as the old adage goes “you get what you paid for” turns out to be true in this industry. Let’s put it that way, it’s better to pay more for less sessions, which are going to be effective and give you long lasting results, than going for the cheaper option, which will leave you disappointed and may force you to look for other alternatives or book more treatments to achieve desired results.
Lastly, like choosing a plastic surgeon, it’s important to choose the right clinic with skilled therapists to contour your body for optimum results. Your therapist should advise you on the number of sessions needed, and perform the treatment correctly to prevent potential dents (in the case of lack of fat) and unevenness (if the device hasn’t been placed properly on the treated area).
In short, yes it works, as long as the right clinic and technology are utilised. It may take a few treatments to achieve optimum results as all bodies react differently to treatments, but Fat Freezing is a clinically proven alternative to invasive fat reduction.
To read more on fat freezing studies that prove its effectiveness as an alternative to surgical liposuction, visit the clinical studies section of our website. Note that these studies have been performed by independent medical professionals.
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Once a treatment is performed, the body naturally loses 20% to 30% of the fat cells, which then die over the course of 12 weeks and are eliminated naturally through the lymphatic system. They don’t come back.
It’s important to note that the required number of treatments vary based on the clients’ unique body. Hence why, we offer an initial consultation to assess the area(s) of concern and create a custom treatment plan for the individual.
Although Fat Freezing is considered a non-invasive procedure, there are some potential side effects that one should be aware of. Most clients do not feel anything during the procedure, aside from pulling, tugging, pinching, or tingling sensations in the treated area before it is numbed by the cold.
The treated areas may also become red, swollen, or bruised afterwards. Most of these minor side effects reduce or vanish within a few days to weeks after the procedure. It is normal, however, to experience numbness or loss of sensation in the treatment area for around a month.
As Fat Freezing does not involve surgery or anaesthesia, there is no recovery time required, and normal activities can be resumed immediately.
We also recommend clients who have medical conditions or are adversely affected by the cold, to check with their doctor first before undergoing this treatment. We do not recommend pregnant or breastfeeding women undergo Fat Freezing because scientific testing has not been performed on these individuals.
In very rare occasions, fat cells respond to cool sculpting by enlarging rather than dying. This condition is called paradoxical adipose hyperplasia (PAH). A 2014 study reported the incidence of PAH is currently thought to be around 0.0051%. Researchers have noticed that most people who develop the condition are men that had previous medical conditions. While PAH does not cause any symptoms aside from changing physical appearance, only surgery can reverse it.
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Fat Freezing prices vary from one company to another. Body Catalyst doesn’t ‘price match’ because our technology is superior to other companies. It is false economy to undergo inferior Fat Freezing treatments that produce inferior results. Your first treatment will vary from $324.5 for chin sculpting to $649 for two applicators of fat freezing (i.e: Love Handles are considered two areas).
We are currently offering 50% OFF your first treatment as an incentive to experience Fat Freezing and the results it produces. We also have custom package deals and memberships in place to make it more cost effective for our clients looking to contour their body. Pricing will be discussed during your initial consultation as we need to perform a body assessment first in order to give a quote.
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