One of the most popular cosmetic enhancement procedures year after year is liposuction. At our Albany practice in recent years, though, a new body contouring option has been giving liposuction some competition. CoolSculpting® is a non-surgical procedure that can effectively remove fat and shape the body. So, how do you know which is right for you?
- Liposuction: During liposuction, your surgeon will make a series of small incisions in the targeted areas and then use a small surgical wand to suction out fat tissue. Downtime varies depending on the individual and the size of the area treated, but because the procedure is generally done with local anesthesia, you can be up and around fairly quickly. However, your activities will be limited until you’ve completely healed. As your body heals, you’ll begin to notice the results, but it does take between 3 to 6 months to see the final results because of swelling. Liposuction costs more than CoolSculpting, but the results are more dramatic, especially if liposuction is combined with another procedure, such as breast augmentation or tummy tuck surgery.
- CoolSculpting: If you can’t fit enough time into your schedule for downtime or recovery but you still want to remove stubborn fat deposits from your hips, thighs, or abdomen, then CoolSculpting might be for you. This procedure uses patented technology that freezes away fat. During the procedure, your doctor gently pulls the fatty tissue between 2 cooling panels that send a burst of cold to the underlying fat deposits. Although most people say CoolSculpting is very tolerable, you might feel some minor discomfort from the cold, like when using an ice pack. Immediately after treatment, you can return to your normal activities. Your body will naturally flush away the fat cells, and in 1 to 3 months you’ll notice more visible results. CoolSculpting is less costly than liposuction, but the results are less dramatic. It’s a good solution for targeting stubborn pockets of fat that are resistant to diet and exercise without any downtime.
To learn which of these procedures will give you the results you’re looking for, I suggest you consult with a board-certified plastic surgeon. He or she will evaluate your body and your aesthetic goals and make the best recommendation for you.