Are Coolsculpting results TRULY permanent? Also, are repeated treatments safe?

I've heard that the results from Coolsculpting only last 10 to 15 years. Extreme weight gain aside, are the results from Coolsculpting truly permanent (at least in terms of fat cell number)? What about if you get pregnant--do fat cells regrow/multiply in that area, negating your results? Also, are repeated treatments to the same area safe? Any long term health effects such as increased cancer risk or long term fat tissue damage? Thank you very much for your help!

Doctor Answers 11

CoolSculpting's Fat Elimination Is Permanent

Once the fat cells have been eliminated by CoolSculpting or any other fat-cell-killing technique, they are gone for good. They will not regrow after pregnancy nor after 10 years' duration. However, if you gain weight, the fat cells that are left behind may stretch to accommodate the extra fat. It is important to maintain the good results you obtained with CoolSculpting by maintaining a healthy diet and exercise regimen. There are no known long-term side effects or risks with CoolSculpting. Please consult with a board-certified dermatologist to have all of your concerns addressed and find out if CoolSculpting is right for you.


San Diego Dermatologist
4.8 out of 5 stars 41 reviews

Coolsculpting is safe.

Coolsculpting is a very safe procedure also it is permanent. It permanently kills the fat cells. If you gain weight it means that your current fat cells increase in size but not in number.

Indefinite

I hear this question quite often from patients. CoolSculpting works through a process called apoptosis. Apoptosis eliminates fat cells permanently by programming their cell death without harming surrounding tissue. This results in a permanent reduction of ones fat pad. By puberty one has as many fat cells as they are going to have in a lifetime. When we gain weight the fat cells expand and when weight is lost they shrink. By permanently reducing a patients fat pad through CoolSculpting, there are that many few fat cells to grow or shrink. Pregnancy would just allow the existing fat cells to expand.


It's extremely important to go to a top CoolSculpting Complete provider. Top providers are able to offer buy one area and get one free.

Michael Law, MD
Raleigh-Durham Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 110 reviews

CoolSculpting Is Permanent

CoolSculpting® fat reduction, like liposuction, is permanent. The fat that is destroyed will not return. If you gain weight, the remaining fat cells will increase in size, but the number of fat cells will not multiply. The exception to this "rule" is that if you become morbidly obese, then the fat cells will multiply and you will undo the effects of the procedure. Pregnancy will not change the number of fat cells; the weight gain will increase the size of the cells, and they should return to their pre-pregnancy state after weight loss. Repeated treatments are safe, and there are no long-term health effects related to the treatments. Thanks for your questions.

Fat Cells and CoolSculpting

Great questions. Let’s ask the same questions about liposuction since we’ve been doing liposuction for almost 30 years. Yes, some fat is always left behind no matter what treatment you choose. If you become pregnant you do gain weight and fat cells do enlarge. If you gain a large amount of weight all fat cells everywhere get larger.
Yes you can do liposuction a second time in the same area, but with laser lipo and Vaser ultrasound lipo, there is some scarring underneath the skin, which makes a second procedure harder. This is not true with CoolSculpting, Yes, you can safely and effectively do multiple procedures in the same areas with CoolSculpting and yes, I am impressed with the results.
There are no cancer risks seen over the history of liposuction, i.e. suction trauma, heat injury with lasers or using cold during treatment as with CoolSculpting.

Douglas J. Key, MD
Portland Dermatologic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

The CoolSculpting Fat Loss is Permanent

CoolSculpting causes fat cells to be frozen and irreversibly undergo a process of cell death. Thus, this fat is permanently eliminated. If you gain weight, as with pregnancy, the remaining fat cells could expand. However, for patients who maintain their weight and continue to live a healthy lifestyle, the results should continue for many years. At this point, some have observed several years of continued improvement after CoolSculpting, but no one can say at this point that it only lasts 10-15 years. To answer your other questions, repeated treatments in the same area are indeed safe. There is no known cancer risk or long-term tissue damage. 

Ryan Greene, MD, PhD
Fort Lauderdale Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 69 reviews

Lasting effects from CoolSculpting

The quick answer is yes, the fat cells that reach the designated cooling temperature are gone. You do need to remember that CoolSculpting is not meant to be a weight loss procedure, but a fat pocket targeting procedure.

Patients who show the best results are those who are close to their ideal weight who have isolated areas of fat accumulation that are not responding to exercise or diet. 

Fat cells themselves do not multiply, but they can expand and weight gain that is not muscle will certainly enlarge fat cells over the entire body, including in the same areas where you were treated.

The treatment is FDA approved and safe. The affected fat cells disintegrate slowly and are swept out of the body in a way that does not trigger increased blood fats.

The skin does not "freeze" at the same temperature as fat cells, so no collateral damage occurs. There has been no correlation to cancer risks.

Rebecca Fitzgerald, MD
Los Angeles Dermatologic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 21 reviews

Coolsculpting Results

We are born with a certain number of fat cells; the cells that are desctructed by a Coolsculpting treatment called cryolipolysis and are permanently removed by your body. That being said you can expand the size of your remaining fat cells if you do not maintain a healthy diet and exercise program. Coolsculpting destructs about 20% of the fat in the treated area; sometimes multiple treatments in the same area are necessary for the best results. The Coolsculpting technology is very safe, it is the only non-invasive procedure that uses advanced cooling technology to gently and effectively target and eliminate fat in specific areas of a patient’s body. This procedure involves no incisions and no anesthesia to reduce the fat layer without harming the skin or other tissues.

Nissan Pilest, MD
Irvine Dermatologic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

CoolSculpting-induced Fat Cell Death is Irreversible and a Permanent Process

Dear writer, CoolSculpting offers a highly effective and biologically selective non-invasive modality to eliminate fat. The results so far have been permanent with some of the earliest treatments having been performed more than five years ago, and the areas if excess fat have not returned. CoolSculpting-induced Fat Cell Death is Irreversible and a Permanent Process, therefore this explains the lasting results that we are seeing. With CoolSculpting the fat cell actually dies and then in gradually eliminated after the treatment over the following few months. Maximum results from treatment may be seen after two to three months. 

CoolSculpting Results

Hello and thank you for your question. The fat cells that get frozen off in a coolsculpting treatment are permanently eliminated from your body. In a best case scenario, you can expect up to 35% of the fat cells in a treated area to be permanently frozen. However, if you gain weight, other fat cells in the area can increase in size which will mask the results of your coolsculpting treatment. That is why it is important to maintain a healthy diet and exercise so you can get the best results from your coolsculpting procedure. There is no harm in doing multiple treatments to the same area. It is done often. There have been no long term adverse effects with the coolsculpting treatment, but please remember that the treatment is still very young (only a few years old). It is important that you discuss everything with your provider prior to committing to a coolsculpting treatment. Hope this helps!

Michael A. Zadeh, MD, FACS
Sherman Oaks General Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 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.