Does CoolSculpting Run the Risk of Fat Returning but to Other Areas of the Body?

There was a study recently that demonstrated that fat returns after liposuction though not to the areas treated. Instead, it is distributed elsewhere in the body. Does one run the same risk of fat returning to other areas of the body after CoolSculpting? I understand that one needs to be careful of diet and continue exercising but if careful diet and exercise are maintained, could the fat return post-CoolSculpting in the way it has been reported post-Lipo?

Doctor Answers 11

Coolsculpting results in permanent reduction of fat cells in the treated area

Remember that cool sculpting permanently reduces the number of fat cells in the treated area. If you then gain weight, the remaining fat cells in the treated area, as well as fat cells in the rest of your body, will enlarge. Because you have fewer fat cells in the treated area, that area will not enlarge as much as if the area had never been treated. Therefore, the weight gain is less noticeable in the areas that have been treated. The same concept applies to "uneven" weight gain after liposuction. The extent of the unevenness will depend on the ratio of fat cells that were removed versus left behind. I hope that answers your question.

Coolsculpting and permanent fat reduction

One of the most amazing aspects of Coolsculpting is that it leads to permanent fat reduction in the treated area.  Unlike liposuction where the fat can return in other areas, coolsculpting permanently treats the fat and will not return in a different areas.  Zeltiq is not a weight loss device, however, and if you gain weight you will gain weight in all areas, including any areas treated.  For the best cosmetic results please consult a board certified dermatologist with expertise in coolsculpting.

Weight Gain post coolsculpting

It is important to understand the distinction between fat reduction and weight gain. Coolsculpting will eliminate approximately 20% of the fat cells in the treated area. However, if you gain weight, the remaining fat cells in the area can enlarge which may hide the results of the coolsculpting treatment.

Kris M. Reddy, MD, FACS
West Palm Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 32 reviews

Cool Sculpting treatments lead to permanent fat loss but is not for weight loss!

The fat cells don't return but you can gain weight and have it disturbed over the body as normal afterwards.  It is important to maintain a health lifestyle with appropriate diet and exercise.

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 Results

Thank you for your question. When you have your CoolSculpting treatment, the affected fat cells will be eliminated. As long as you maintain your weight with your normal diet and exercise, your long-term results should remain stable.

Daniel Shapiro, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 93 reviews

Gaining weight after CoolSculpting

Thank you for your question.

CoolSculpting freezes the fat cells and then your body gets rid of the fat cells.  This procedure does not prevent you from gaining weight.  The remaining fat cells in your body will enlarge.  Best to watch your diet and exercise before and after the CoolSculpting treatment.

Best Wishes!

Fat gain after coolsculpting can occur but not to treated area.

The fat cells that get "crystallized" with coolsculpting and then die and get wash out of your body do not return to other areas. If you gain weight other fat cells around your body can expand. This expansion is not from the fat cells that were treated.

Laurie Casas, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 77 reviews

Fat gain after liposuction or CoolSculpting by Zeltiq

Energy in = Energy Used + Energy Stored.  Zeltiq's CoolSculpting can reduce the fat volume in one area 20% at four months.  This is not as much as liposuction can remove.  If a person is somewhat overweight, but their weight is stable, that means that they are eating more calories than their body needs to use for energy and basl metabolic rate (the normal bodily functions such as heart beating, lungs breathing, etc.)  The excess calories are then stored as fat.  If one is stable, and then removes some fat whether with liposuction or Zeltiq's CoolSculpting, but the diet and exercise regimen don't change, then there still might be an abundance of calories consumed compared to those needed and there will be an increase in fat. That fat can be stored in the same cells that are still remaining in the sites that underwent the Zeltiq CoolSculpting and/or in other body sites.

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

Are the effects of CoolSculpting permanent?

The nice thing about CoolSculpting is that it not only removes the fat but also removes the fat cells. As as a result of the cooling process and the freezing of the fat the fat cells will be removed. Since the number of fat cells we have are stable once we reach our adult years this removal is permanent I.e. these fat cells will not return. Of course,  having CoolSculpting cannot (like any other fat reduction procedure) prevent you from putting on weight. However since the number of fat cells in the treated area have been permanently reduced the amount of fat increase in the treated area will be less as a result of the prior CoolSculpting treatment

Ted Brezel, MD
Long Island Dermatologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

Coolsculpting is a permanent reduction in fat

Coolsculpting is a procedure that results in the permanent apoptosis or death of fat cells. Those cells that die are removed naturally through the body's metabolic system. That fat does not return in that area or any other area of the body.

Steven Hacker, MD
West Palm Beach Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 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.