Coolsculpting Licensing Since It’s Noninvasive. Can Anyone Provide This Service?

Since Zeltic coolsculpting is a non-invasive technology can the equipment only be used under the supervision of a medical doctor/physician/plastic surgeon or can any beautician/beauty treatment facility provide this service by purchasing a machine?

Doctor Answers 8

The answer depends on state laws.

CoolSculpting which is registered by the FDA as a prescriptive device, requires that a physician be in some way involved. Essentially the way things work is that if a machine is going to be sold by Zeltiq they have to verify that the device will be under the supervision of a licensed physician in the state that the device is being sold. How the physician chooses to utilize the device within his or her practice is then restricted by local laws having to do with physician extenders. Have you ever been to a pharmacy and met with a nurse practitioner or physicians assistant to get a prescription instead of going to see your primary care physician directly? Generally for a non-physician to be able to deliver the treatment the non-physician needs to be under the supervision of a licensed physician. With regards to the delivery of the treatment itself not many physicians will actually do the treatment themselves but will rather delegate the delivery of treatment to other clinicians who have been specifically trained on the delivery of these types of services.

Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 109 reviews

Coolsculpting provider qualifications

I was the first plastic surgeon in the Houston area to bring on Coolsculpting. I would say with any device, there is a learning curve. Both in terms of knowing what the limitations of the device is, and gaining experience if this is something that can be delegated within a physician practice.
I have found in my own practice that when I delegated completely, the results were more inconsistent. Today I am involved in every consult and draw out the treatment plan for every patient prior to their treatment. I still do many of the treatments myself depending on my schedule, but I do have a team that supports me.
I would be weary of going to place where you don't see a physician or where the surgeon is not an expert in body contouring.

Young R. Cho, MD, PhD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

Physicians Should Perform CoolSculpting

Thank you for your question. CoolSculpting should only be performed by a licensed, certified physician. This will ensure the best and safest treatment. 

Daniel Shapiro, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 107 reviews

CoolSculpting by Zeltiq may be easy but a doctor should evaluate who is a candidate and what exact location needs to be treated

CoolSculpting feezes fat cells which kills them. The area of lipid abundancy is treated for one hour while our patients watch NetFlix or use their IPADs, kindles, iphones, or listen to music or watch TV. Over four months, the average patient derives 20% reduction of fat volume There can be significant fat volume loss with a few treatments.  The success of this treatment is that it works better than Zerona, and without surgery can provide good results, especially if retreated every two months for 3 treatments compared to more aggressive SmartLipo, Vaser, Ultrasonic and tumescent liposuction.

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

Who Can Provide Coolsculpting Treatments?

Thank you for your question.

At this time, Zeltiq Corporation is selling this machine only to licensed physicians who have to undergo a training period for themselves as well as their staff.  There is a certification process and after this is completed, the physician and/or his/her staff can perform this procedure.   This way, they can ensure that the patients have the best possible outcome and follow up after the treatment.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,498 reviews

Can anyone buy a Coolsculpting Machine?


Zeltiq, the manufacturers of Coolsculpting, will only sell to physicians who are willing to be compliant with training and monitoring of the treatment.  They recommend all physicians who own a machine to undergo several months of  certification process so that treatments and follow up with patients is consistent and regulated.  The company is to be applauded for its adherence to medical ethics for the benefit of the patients.



Dr. Liu

Grace Liu, MD
Newport Beach Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 50 reviews

Cool Sculpting

The devices are sold top medical practices.

Body reshaping can be performed with a cannula that removes fat via liposuction or with noninvasive technology like Cool Sculpting. With Cool Sculpting there is no cannula inserted into your body. All treatments are performed on the surface from the outside in using technology that freezes the fat. Don’t hesitate to give us a call in Austin regarding a Body Reshaping Consult at the Upper Room. On our Facebook Page there is an Interview I recently did with KVUE, a local news station in Austin, that was picked by affiliates around the United States, including Miami. During the Interview we discussed the technology of Cool Sculpting as well as it application process.

The discomfort from treatment does resolve. Taking over the counter tylenol or naproxen resolves this in the majority of cases. If you have swelling that is persistent then a waist binder is helpful.

CoolSculpting Technicians

CoolSculpting devices are sold exclusively to physicians. The CoolSculpting device is FDA approved for the elimination of fat. It is a class II medical device. It does not need to be performed by the physician. Practitioners in a physicians office receive thorough training and will be supervised by a physicians, physician assistants and nurse practitioners. 

Michael Law, MD
Raleigh-Durham Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 120 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.