I had fat freezing done and it hasn't worked. I had it done for 30 minutes. Is this normal? (photos)

The first two pictures were taken just after the cry lipo and the other at 6 weeks and my abdomen is the same now as the 6 week picture

Doctor Answers 13


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What is not normal is your treatment time.  Even with the new "cup" heads a normal treatment for an area is about 35 min. and unless they are using 2 machines, that is only for one cycle or area of treatment.

We usually recommend a minimum of 2 cycles per area and from what I see in the pictures, I would recommend 4 cycles for your abdomen which would be a total of 8 cycles at 2 sessions, one month apart.

Good luck

Fayetteville General Surgeon

30 minutes is not a coolsculpting treatment

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30 minutes is not a typical treatment. Zeltiq deems any treatment less than 50 minutes to not be a complete coolsculpting treatment. Make sure that the center is listed on the coolsculpting.com website as an approving coolsculpting center.

Kris M. Reddy, MD, FACS
West Palm Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 56 reviews


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If you only had a treatment for 30 minutes, I'm suspicious that you really didn't have a Coolsculpting treatment.    Coolsculpting requires application of the device for freezing for 60 minutes for each area.   
Perhaps you had some other treatment?

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Zeltiq CoolSculpting is the only FDA Approved

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What type of machine was used? The only FDA-approved machine, and the only one that works, for cryolipolysis is the Zeltiq CoolSculpting machine and is used for, at the very least, an hour. You were either not treated for the appropriate amount of time, treated with a non-FDA approved machine, or both. Contact the office where your procedure was performed to see what they use and if it is the Zeltiq CoolSculpting then ask why you were not treated for the full hour.

30 minutes of cryo-lipolysis??

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That's not an acceptable treatment time for CoolSculpting, which is the ONLY FDA-approved device for cryolipolysis (fat-freezing) in the US.  I wonder if you had a treatment with an unapproved device??

Carmen Kavali, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

One or Two hours for Coolsculpting on the Applicators

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Coolsculpting works on everyone and is a great non-invasive weight loss procedure.  The applicator on all areas of the body takes one hour except the outer thighs which takes two full hours on each side.  If you were only treated for 30 minutes then it is unlikely that you were treated with the real Coolsculpting device.  There are a lot of imitations now on the market.  I would return to your treating physician for examination.  The full effect takes up to four months.  For the best cosmetic results please consult a board certified dermatologist with a great deal of experience with Coolsculpting.

I had fat freezing done and it hasn't worked.

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Coolsculpting uses freezing to induce programmed cell death of fat cells. With coolsculpting applicators are applied for one hour for this process. If your treatment was only thirty minutes, it is possible you were not treated with the real coolsculpting machine.

Suzanne Kim Doud Galli, MD, PhD, FACS
Washington Facial Plastic Surgeon

Fat Freezing for 30 minutes

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If the treatment you are referring to is CoolSculpting then you need to have the applicator device attached to the area of fat for at least 1 hour for the suction based applicators and 2 hours for the non-suction based applicator. 30 minutes is not enough time to freeze the fat cells to the point of death and it is not surprising that you have not seen results. Usually with one full treatment you can expect a 25-35% reduction in the fat of the area. Looking at your pictures though you will likely require more than 1 treatment to achieve the best results.

Michael A. Zadeh, MD, FACS
Sherman Oaks General Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

Fat freezing treatments

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Exactly what treatment did you have and where did you have it? The only fat freezing technology approved by the FDA would be Coolsculpting which requires a minimum of a one hour treatment cycle. This treatment was developed by two Harvard dermatologists so my personal advice is to see someone with the proper training and education for best and safest results. 

Omar Ibrahimi, MD, PhD
Stamford Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 28 reviews


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Did you have Coolsculpting? The treatment should take one hour per site. I typically see 15-20% fat reduction with each treatment. It can take 2-3 months to see the full results.

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.