Lewis Plastic Surgery: Gordon Lewis, MD
2331-A Robious Station Circle
Midlothian, VA 23113
At our Richmond, Virginia practice, CoolSculpting is a popular nonsurgical fat reduction treatment. The FDA-approved procedure contours various areas of the body and the neck using extreme cold to destroy fat cells without harming other nearby tissues. No downtime is needed and patients can return to their normal daily activities immediately after the treatment.
Good CoolSculpting Candidates
CoolSculpting is most often used for patients concerned about pockets of fat in areas such as the “love handles,” thighs, abdomen, hips, and buttocks. In order to be a good candidate for CoolSculpting, you need good skin elasticity. If you have loose skin, you may need a surgical procedure for best results. CoolSculpting isn’t a weight loss technique, but it is effective on fat that is resistant to diet and exercise.
How Does CoolSculpting Work?
CoolSculpting actually freezes and crystalizes the unwanted fat cells in the area or areas where there are excess bulges of fat. After crystalizing, the fat cells 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 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.
The CoolSculpting device uses 2 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 1 hour. This allows the fat to 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 the first treatment.
Depending on the areas to be treated, you can sit or lie down during the procedure, which takes 1 hour per area treated. You can read, relax, or work on your laptop as the device does its work.
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 to 3 weeks.
The gradual process of eliminating fat cells takes about 3 weeks after a treatment and looks perfectly natural. At that time, you will begin to see results. The results improve gradually during the ensuing 3 months after each treatment. During this time, the fat cells that remain will condense so that the area will become smoother.
Most people see great results from only 1 treatment, but in many cases a second treatment is necessary to get the desired outcome. The results are permanent, but new fat cells can develop at a later time. You can prevent this to some degree by exercising regularly and maintaining your weight at a healthy level without significant fluctuations.
No recovery time is required after CoolSculpting. You can continue with normal activities directly after your appointment. For a few days, there might be some minor redness, bruising, and tingling in the areas that were treated.
CoolSculpting vs. Liposuction
Although CoolSculpting is an excellent way to treat fat and contour the body, it is not as powerful a technique as liposuction. In some cases, it may be more cost-effective to have surgical liposuction to reduce unwanted fat and to improve the contour of specific areas. That said, not everyone is ready to have a surgical procedure and CoolSculpting can help most people achieve an improved contour without the need for a more invasive procedure.
What does CoolSculpting cost?
As you might imagine, the cost of CoolSculpting varies depending on the number of areas being treated. At our practice, CoolSculpting starts at $600. We provide a detailed quote for your treatment after your consultation.
Does CoolSculpting require surgery?
No, CoolSculpting is a nonsurgical, non-invasive procedure that requires no needles, no incisions, and no downtime.
Does CoolSculpting require an anesthetic?
No, CoolSculpting is not painful, so no anesthetic is needed.
Can I remain awake during CoolSculpting?
Yes, since no anesthetic is required, patients remain awake for the treatment.
How long does a CoolSculpting treatment last?
About 1 hour per treatment area.
Are the results of CoolSculpting immediate?
No, the results take at least 3 weeks to begin to show up, and they continue for about 2 to 3 months after a treatment as the fat cells are naturally expelled from the body and the remaining fat cells condense, smoothing the treated areas.
Do the destroyed fat cells return?
No, the fat cells do not return, but you can develop new fat cells. Maintaining your weight and exercising often help to prevent the development of new fat cells.
If you’ve heard about CoolSculpting and how it can “freeze” away fat, request a consultation using the online form to meet with Dr. Gordon Lewis, or call our office at
(804) 267-6009 to schedule an appointment.
Gordon Lewis, M.D.
Dr. Lewis, a native of Richmond, prioritizes building honest, trusting relationships and providing personalized care for his patients.
Meet Dr. Lewis