Severe nerve pain after CoolSculpting, 8 days in and not at all better. Could this be permanent nerve damage?

Extremely sharp burning pains and shooting pains in lower and upper abdomen from cool sculpting. Day 8 post treatment and severe pain started day 4 and hasn't subsided, am taking neurontin and it does nothing for the pain, compression and ice no longer work as pain triples as soon as I take ice off, how long is the worst case scenario of this pain? Could this be permanent nerve damage?

Doctor Answers 11

Pain following CoolSculpting

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A late onset of a sharp, annoying, pain following treatment with the large CoolSculpting applicator is rare but can happen. If this occurs your physician will prescribe Neurontin to help alleviate these symptoms.  Some patients also like to wear a fitted tank top to help aid in some relief when sleeping. I would suggest follow up with your physician to see if he may want to up your dosage since this can last anywhere from 2-3 weeks. It would be extremely rare for this to be permanent. Hang in there!

Morristown Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 59 reviews

Late onset pain after CoolSculpting

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Pain that occurs at day 4 is very common. It is usually gone by 2 weeks, but could last 4-6 weeks.  I would recommend you follow up with the physician that treated you.  If neurontin doesn't work, there are other things that can helpful.  It would be extremely rare to be a permanent problem.

Trey Aquadro, M.D.
Auburn, AL

Pain after Coolscupting

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Coolsculpting is a fabulous procedure but one rare side effect is localized pain after the procedure.  Neurontin usually helps and you should speak to your physician about being prescribed that medication.  This localized pain resolves in one to two weeks.  Please return to your treating physician for examination and assistance.

Pain after Coolsculpting

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This kind of pain can occur. It can last as much as 2-3 weeks. It typically resolves. Give it time. I would not apply ice. Sometimes compression or tight garments can make it worse. I would advise Ibuprofen. Lidocaine patches also are very helpful. We typically prescribe these and some pain medication if this occurs. I believe your symptoms will resolve. Try not to panic.

Burton M. Sundin, MD
Richmond Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 62 reviews

Nerve pain after Coolsculpting

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Sorry to hear about your symptoms after Coolsculpting.  I find that compression can also help in addition to the neurontin.  For my patients where the discomfort is very intense, I usually recommend increasing the dose of the medication until the symptoms subside.  I also remind the patients that if we go to higher doses, then we need to taper down the dose.  Another suggestion for your discomfort are compounding medications that have the neurontin as well as other anti-inflammatory medications.
I usually explain to patients that the intensity usually subsides by the end of the 2nd week.

Severe Nerve Pain After CoolSculpting

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Hi Dawn. This is a rare, but known side effect of the CoolSculpting treatment. It doesn't happen to everyone. It usually resolves completely within 2 weeks, but in some cases it can take as long as 4-6 weeks. It will not cause permanent nerve damage. You should follow up with your provider if you haven't already.

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

Coolsculpting and Nerve Pain

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this happens in some patients and i suggest you contact your physician, oral prednisone, oral neurontin and diuretics all seem to help.  lymphatic massage is also useful if you can tolerate it. It would resolve in 6-8 weeks. Best, Dr. Emer

Jason Emer, MD
Los Angeles Dermatologic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 207 reviews


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Coolscuplting will not cause permanent nerve damage, the company itself has done many studies to prove this. This discomfort can last up to 3 weeks. It is best to go back to the physician whom carried out to procedure to see if you are able to have anything to manage the pain better. This can be a normal reaction to Coolscuplt and it will subside over time.

All the best
Dr Davin Lim

Pain after coolsculpting

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What you are experiencing is very common. The pain subsides in about 2-3 weeks.  I know it probably drives you crazy,  but I have never seen anyone with any permanent nerve damage.

Nerve pain

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The nerve pain is self limited and will not be permanent. Ask your doctor for a prescription for neurontin. 

Sheila S. Nazarian, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 56 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.