Zeltiq CoolSculpting - Are There Any Side Effects?

Doctor Answers 26

CoolSculpting Side Effects

CoolSculpting is an FDA approved class II medical device. It is safe for most healthy people. There certainly are some exceptions. CoolSculpting (like most aesthetic devices) has not been tested on women who are pregnant or breast feeding. Therefore, women who are pregnant, breast feeding, or trying to become pregnant are not ideal candidates. There are several other contraindications that your doctors office can discuss with you. 

In the office of Michael Law MD, we do will not perform CoolSculpting on people with the following conditions

1) Pregnant, breast feeding or trying to become pregnant
2) Fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, or currently suffering from any other auto-immune disorder that causes excessive pain, weakness or discomfort
3) Hernia or history of hernia in the area to be treated
4) A BMI of 34 or more (Bodybuilders or individuals with extremely muscular physiques could possibly be an exception
5) Any person currently suffering from chronic pain
6) Any person who has had body contouring surgery within the last 12 months without written consent from your physician
7) Any person who has a health condition or injury that prevents them from walking 1 mile each day
8) Individuals with a history of anorexia or bulimia in the last twelve months
9) Any person under the age of 19
10) Individuals with lymphedema or other conditions effecting the lymphatic system


Raleigh-Durham Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 110 reviews

CoolSculpting Side Effects

Post treatment there is usually some mild redness that resolves after about an hour. Occasionally there may be some temporary mild bruising. Most patients experience some temporary numbness, tingling, tenderness, and itching, which are all completely normal. There are some other rare side effects, but those listed above are the most common. A few of the less common side effects are paradoxical hyperplasia, nerve pain, vasovagal symptoms. You should obtain a consultation so that your provider can go over these with you in more detail and determine if you are a candidate for the procedure

John Diaz, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

The most common side effects are temporary swelling, bruising, and numbness

The most common side effects from CoolSculpting are temporary swelling, bruising, numbness, and a tingling sensation. These side effects generally last only a few days to two weeks at most, although the numbness may last for longer. Most patients are able to return to work immediately following a treatment, and are able to manage side effects easily with over the counter medication. Be sure to always see a board-certified, experienced dermatologist for any CoolSculpting treatment.

Sabrina Fabi, MD
San Diego Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 66 reviews

Few CoolSculpting Side Effects

Major side effects or complications are rare following a CoolSculpting procedure because it is noninvasive. There are no incisions and no injections. Most patients return to work or normal activities immediately after the treatment. You may see some redness in the treated area, which could last just a few minutes or up to a couple of hours. Swelling might also occur and could last a few weeks before completely fading. A dull sensation is another known side effect, lasting from 1 week to 2 months.

Daryl K. Hoffman, MD
San Jose Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

Side Effects

CoolSculpting has few side effects.  Some patients experience slight discomfort during the initial phase of treatment related to the suction of the machine.  After this patients are comfortable and many take a nap, read a book, catch up on the phone, or enjoy the quiet time alone!.  After the treatment is complete some patients see redness immediately after and minimal bruising for a few days.  During the following few weeks some will experience tingling, numbness, mild burning at the site of treatment but this all resolves.  There is no downtime after a CoolSculpting treatment and you can resume normal daily activities immediately.

CoolSculpting Side Effects

Most side effects patients experience are minimal and usually self resolve within 2-4 weeks. The most common are swelling, numbness, tenderness and for some pins and needles(nerve based pain). Most patients resume normal routine immediately after treatment. 
Good Luck!

Sheila S. Nazarian, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 51 reviews

Side effects from cool sculpting

The side effects most patients experience are tenderness in the treated area which usually subsides in a few days, some experience numbness or tingling, and swelling can also occur. But none of the side effects typically interfere with daily activities. 

Coolsculpting side effects

The side effects of coolsculpting is minimal. We do about 2  - 3 patients a day. Typically, the patients will have slight tenderness and some numbness for a few days.

Kris M. Reddy, MD, FACS
West Palm Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

CoolSculpting Side Effects

CoolSculpting is a noninvasive procedure which produces impressive results for patients who are looking to reduce fat in targetted areas like the abdomen, flanks, and thighs. Patients will receive a physical exam and complete a comprehensive health history before CoolSculpting can be recommended to be sure that the patient is a good candidate for the procedure. Patients who are pregnant, breast feeding or considering getting pregnant should refrain from treatment until after those conditions are present. Patients with certain health concerns will not make good candidates and may be better served by liposuction or possibly diet and exercise.

Paul Vitenas, Jr., MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 104 reviews

CoolSculpting Has Minimal Side Effects

                  Coolsculpting represents a significant advance in the management of localized fat collections. The procedure is associated with high satisfaction rates and minimal side effects.

                  A small number of patients experience bruising and swelling which spontaneously resolves in 2-3 days. Occasionally, patients experience pain which is often described as dull and achy. This also resolves quickly.

                  Rarely, nausea can occur when abdominal coolsculpting is performed and is probably secondary to traction on the abdominal contents. This is fortunately uncommon and quickly resolves on its own.

                  At this point in time, no long term complications have been associated with this procedure. The procedure is associated with high satisfaction rates and is an excellent option for treating localized adiposity. 

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.