Written by Avery Samuels, Reviewed by Dr. Justin Harper, MD
Where Does the Fat From CoolSculpting Go, and is it Worth the Price?
The idea behind CoolSculpting is the kind of stuff that urban legends are made of. Two Harvard scientists, Dieter Manstein, M.D. and Rox Anderson, M.D. observed that kids who frequently sucked on popsicles were more bedimpled than those who didn’t. They theorized that the outer layers of fat cells were frozen and eliminated without causing damage to the surrounding tissues and overlying skin. This is at the heart of cryolipolysis, the technology behind CoolSculpting. To date, CoolSculpting is the most studied and is considered the most-cost-effective of all the non-invasive technologies available for the safe destruction of stubborn, unwanted, and superficial fat.
FDA approved since 2009 it has a (negative side-effect) rate of .01% which means that it is considered very safe. This is primarily due to the fact that it works with your body’s normal immune process. Nothing is added or introduced into your body and you already have a system in place to cope with the effect of this type of fat cell elimination.
How CoolSculpting freezes fat and destroys it
In nature, fat cells protect us from the cold, similar to the way that blubber insulates marine mammals. Because of this, these cells are the first to be absorbed when surrounding air cools and your body begins to attempt core temperature regulation. There are various shapes and applicator sizes that can be used to contour your body so it looks good from every angle. It is important to select the proper handpiece so a good suction can be established. Once the cells are irrevocably damaged by the cold that is transmitted from the applicator to the fat underneath it, the body’s immune system kicks into gear in a process called apoptosis (pronounced ap-a-toe-sis).
Cell degeneration and death are an important part of a healthy system, we even have cells dedicated to eradicating the waste. White blood cells, primarily the ones called macrophages (pronounced macro-phay-ges), are charged with devouring bacteria and dead cells like the ones produced from the CoolSculpting process. Our bodies are doing it everyday so it’s nothing new.