Why the pain? (photo)

It seems like a dumb question but my body has gone thru all stages: numbness, itchy, stabby, crampy, etc. What do each of the symptoms mean? I had the procedure done 6 days ago, and while I'm not complaing as I was told about the different stages of pain, I am curious about the medical reasons behind it. Thanks! (oh, I had the large applicator on my lower abs. Picture shows the amount of "flesh" in the applicator.)

Doctor Answers 3

Side effects from Coolsculpting

CoolSculpting is a great non-invasive procedure for the abdomen, flanks, and now the inner and outer thinh areas. There are patients who experience numbness or cramps or pain for up to two weeks after the procedure, although this is generally only in the abdomen area with the large applicator. These symptoms are best explained by a combination of the pressure from the vacuum with the large applicator and the freezing of this large area.  The results generally subside in less than two weeks leaving you with only the good results from the coolsculpting procedure.

Body's Response To CoolSculpting

CoolSculping is a safe, non-surgical method to reduce fat with no downtime.  The vacuum applicator draws intact tissue into the cooling chamber and freezes the fat cells.  After the treatment, the patient may have bruising, tenderness, cramping, itching, and numbness.  The reason for these side effects is partially due to the vacuum suction and the massage following treatment.  After the CoolSculpting treatment the body starts to remove the damaged fat cells and these cells are eliminated over the next three months.  The side effects that you described are the sensations of the body targeting those destroyed fat cells and eliminating them safely from the body through the lymphatic system. 

At my practice in Raleigh NC we offer CoolSculpting Complete.  This is a complimentary package that includes dual machines for faster treatment, compression garments for comfort post treatment, and vibrational therapy to assist the lymphatic drainage of the destroyed fat cells.  Instant Rebates are available to my patients because of our status as the top CoolSculpting provider in the region.  Patients receive one free CoolSculpting session with each session purchased.  You can find the top provider in your area by searching the CoolSculpting website.

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

Post Coolsculpting, pain is related to dying cells!

I had Coolsculpting done to my tummy before I bought it several years ago. I was an early purchaser because I had been following the studies and knew I wanted to offer it. No one mentioned the pain/sensation to me, so 6 days after I had it done, I was lying in bed and starting feeling these strange sensations in the area treated. Burning and zinging lasted a week. I knew it had to be related to the procedure and was glad to be able to tell my patients about it. You can't expect to have a large area of thermal (temperature) damage without the body protesting in some way. I think it demonstrates that Coolsculpting does exactly what is said that it does, freezes fat but leaves the skin and deeper tissues unaffected.

Rutledge Forney, MD
Atlanta Dermatologic Surgeon
3.5 out of 5 stars 6 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.