CoolScuplting/Fat Freezing: Will it cause fat to accumulate at other areas of the body that is not treated

I am interested in fat freezing and would like to know what are the possible after effects of the treatment. I am mainly concerned whether the fat that gets treated away be accumulated somewhere else in the body that is not treated? And will future fats will start avoid accumulating in the treated area and accumulate in some other parts of the body more easily? For example if I have fat freezing treatment done on my tummy, in the future will fats tend to accumulate at my thighs etc. more easily?

Doctor Answers 6

Fat Is Evenly Distributed

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Fat cells are receptacles for excess lipids that are not needed for energy. When you lose (or gain) weight, the volume of fat cells change but the number of fat cells remain the same. With CoolSculpting, there is a 20-25% reduction in the number of fat cells in the treated areas. Since there is less fat cells in the treated area, there is less ability to store fat in the treated area. However, fat is still evenly distributed among the remaining fat cells. Therefore, fat will not reform in your thighs instead. We do recommend that you maintain a healthy diet and life style in order to maintain results.

Coolsculpting and Fat Cells

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Coolsculpting is a fabulous procedure for reducing fat cells in a given area and freezes those fat cells. The bulge is slowly reduced by twenty percent in any given area treated. New bulges are not formed elsewhere as a result of this procedure. Please consult a board certified dermatologist who has all of the latest applicators for the best treatment results. 

Where do fat cells go after CoolSculpting

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CoolSculpting causes the selective and natural death of fat cells in the treated area.  Since your body does not make any more fat cells after adolescence, there is no increase in fat cells in the treated area or any other area of your body.  If you maintain your weight and a healthy lifestyle there is no reason to expect additional fat accumulation.

Mark Beaty, MD
Atlanta Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Fat accumulation post coolsculpting

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After the treatment which will eliminate approximately 20% of the fat cells in the treated area, the remaining fat cells can shrink or grow based on weight gain or loss. However, new fat cells will not be produced in another area.

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

CoolSculpting and Fat Reduction

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With each CoolSculpting treatment, 20-25% of the fat cells in the treated area go through a programmed cell death, apoptosis, and are permanently removed from the body.  When you reach adolescence, the number of fat cells in your body is set.  After CoolSculpting, anytime you consume fat, the fat is distributed equally among all of the remaining adipose cells in the body.  As long as you maintain or stay close to your current weight, you will maintain your results.  When patients feel like their fat has "moved" after CoolSculpting, it is because they are now noticing a new area of concern.  Previously, this area might have not been at the forefront of their attention, but when another area of concern is diminished, they are more cognizant of a new area.  This is why it is best to have a full "Treatment to Transformation" plan developed by your CoolSculpting provider.

Kent V. Hasen, MD
Naples Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 67 reviews


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coolsculpting selectively freezes fat cells to induce programmed cell death. You have a certain number of fat cells in your body and these cells do not divide. If you maintain your weight and a healthy lifestyle, you can maintain your results. However, if you gain weight, the fat cells you have will hypertrophy or get bigger.

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

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.