How Coolsculpting Works
Coolsculpting actually freezes and crystalizes the unwanted fat cells in the area(s) where there are excess bulges of fat. After the fat cells have been crystalized, they gradually die and are eliminated from the body naturally. This is a process called cryolipolysis. After the freezing of the cells, some of the fat cells undergo a process called apoptosis (programmed cell death). Over the 3 months following your procedure, the cells die and your body removes the fat cells without internal scarring.
The Coolsculpting device uses two cooling panels, and the bulging fat is drawn up between the panels. You will feel a pulling as the tissue is cooled by the device. The cold is a bit intense, but it is not painful. Once the panels are placed, they need to stay in that area for one hour. This allows the fat to become freeze. After the device is removed, the area is massaged (which increases the efficacy of Coolsculpting). If you want more than one area treated, this can be done immediately following.
Depending on the areas to be treated, you can sit or lie down during the procedure, which takes one hour per area treated. You can read, relax, or work on your laptop as the device does its work.
The procedure starts with Dr. Lewis making a plan for the placement of the Coolsculpting applicators. You will have photos taken as well to document your transformation. One of his trained assistants will then guide you through the procedure. You will be in a comfortable private room and have access to entertainment and have a pager to call for assistance if you need.
After the procedure, you will feel some numbness and tingling in the area that lasts for a few weeks. In most people this is not uncomfortable, but it is something you will be conscious of. This usually resolves after 2-3 weeks.