Get results without surgery
At Elite our name may say Plastic Surgery, but not all of our procedures involve actual surgery. CoolSculpting is a popular treatment we offer to get rid of stubborn pockets of fat with nary a scalpel in sight.
Most people have heard about CoolSculpting, but there is some mystery about how the whole process is done. Here’s some background on the science behind the procedure and how CoolSculpting came to be.
Who knew popsicles could be so enlightening?
As are many scientific discoveries, the process that is today called CoolSculpting, where fat cells are frozen and removed by the body naturally, wasn’t the intended outcome. Two doctors at the Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital, Drs. Dieter Manstein and R. Rox Anderson, were doing a study that theorized children who ate lots of popsicles growing up developed dimples in their cheeks more than children who didn’t eat lots of popsicles. Dimples are depressions in the cheeks where the muscle isn’t covered with much fat, so when the muscle contracts a dimple forms. The idea was that the cold in the popsicles somehow affected the fat cells in the cheeks. They called this Popsicle Panniculitis.
Once the doctors saw what the popsicles were doing to the fat in the cheeks, they theorized the same process/result could happen elsewhere. So, they investigated selectively freezing fat cells in a process they called cryolipolysis. And from those studies CoolSculpting was born.
How CoolSculpting works
Cryolipolysis involves a three-step process. First, cooling is directed downward into the skin. The temperature is precisely equal to the freezing point of fat cells, while not freezing adjacent tissue cells that freeze at a higher temperature. Exposure to this freezing causes fat cell apoptosis (a natural, controlled cell death). The body sends cytokines and other inflammatory mediators to the area to gradually digest the dead fat cells in the weeks following the CoolSculpting session. Lipids from the dead fat cells are slowly released and transported by the lymphatic system to be processed and eliminated from the body, in the same manner that fat in food is eliminated.
The result? A 20 to 23% decrease in fat cells in the treatment area over the months following your CoolSculpting session at Elite.
Comparing CoolSculpting to other non-invasive options
The cooling is the difference between other non-invasive fat reduction methods. In those applications, either laser or high-intensity focused ultrasound energy are used. Unlike CoolSculpting’s precise, targeted freezing of only the fat cells, these other methods cause damage to surrounding tissue. This leads to burning, pain, and other issues.