CoolSculpting ® Versus Liposuction
The two most popular methods of fat reduction used by plastic surgeons today are CoolSculpting ® and liposuction. While each has its benefits, in the question of CoolSculpting ® versus liposuction, each patient must weigh benefits, risks, costs and other aspects of each procedure to determine their own answer.
Of course, a patient who is well qualified as a candidate for one procedure may not be qualified to undergo treatment using the other. This answer in the debate of CoolSculpting ® versus liposuction often depends upon the patient’s body and needs for fat reduction.
Procedural Differences: CoolSculpting ® Versus Liposuction
In considering CoolSculpting ® versus liposuction, you must first appreciate how the twoprocedures are performed. CoolSculpting ® is a fat freezing procedure that uses fat freezing applicators on top of the skin’s surface, with no invasive surgery required. Liposuction, on the other hand, is a surgery involving anesthesia, associated surgical risks and other issues related to undergoing an invasive procedure.
CoolSculpting ® may be completed within one or two hour long sessions of fat reduction treatment. The patient is able to relax, read a book, send emails or even nap while undergoing the treatment (s). On the other hand, liposuction takes a few hours in duration and requires up to a week of recovery time.
CoolSculpting ® treatments use applicators designed for use on all patients. In other words, there is no customization of the shape or size of CoolSculpting ® devices. Also, on average, there is up to 30 to 35 percent fat reduction in the average patient using CoolSculpting ®.
Liposuction, on the other hand, is performed by a skilled plastic surgeon such as Dr. Agha who can sculpt the body using the liposuction cannula, providing custom contouring and creating symmetry through fat reduction. Much like a sculptor manipulates clay, a qualified plastic surgeon can use liposuction for highly customized results that are not possible with CoolSculpting ®.
CoolSculpting ® is limited by the certain body regions
CoolSculpting ® is limited to use for fat reduction only on certain designated areas of the body which the applicators can be applied to. These areas include the abdomen, the thighs, the arms, the waist, and the back. On the other hand, liposuction can be used on any area of the body that there is excess fat. Liposuction is not limited to certain areas or regions of the body. It can be used on all parts of the body from face to calves effectively and efficiently.
Liposuction is customizable
Liposuction is fully customizable in how it is used at the hands of a well trained plastic surgeon. The plastic surgeon may perform liposuction on a large area of the body or for very precise sculpting. Liposuction does not have the regional limitations that CoolSculpting ® does. In an asymmetrical body, as most of us are, liposuction can also be used to create more symmetry by removing more fat from a larger area and less from the opposite smaller area. For example in many women the saddlebags are uneven with one side being larger than the other.
Cost Differences: CoolSculpting ® Versus Liposuction
In considering CoolSculpting ® versus liposuction, cost can be a major factor toward selection of a fat reduction method. CoolSculpting ® will provide an average fat reduction on targeted areas by up to 35 percent. Liposuction can be more intensive for fat reduction in areas as needed, with the plastic surgeon using liposuction to sculpt the patient’s body. However, if 30 to 35 percent of fat loss is adequate, CoolSculpting ® may be sufficient and more economical. Liposuction, although more customizable in results and thus possibly worth higher cost to many patients, averages about $4000 or more per patient. When considering cost only in CoolSculpting ® versus liposuction, clearly CoolSculpting ® wins the debate. If considering ability to provide custom, larger scale results as more important, the higher cost of liposuction is worthwhile.
Recovery: CoolSculpting ® Versus Liposuction
In regards to recovery, CoolSculpting ® is likely a clear winner, in that there is no recovery period with CoolSculpting ®. Patients undergoing CoolSculpting ® can go back to their daily routine immediately after fat reduction treatment.
Liposuction patients undergo a surgical treatment for fat reduction. This means they have incisions to care for and the body does undergo some physical trauma, as it does during any surgery. Resulting swelling, bruising and pain can be quite prominent. Swelling usually reduces a great deal within the first several days after liposuction and the patient can even return to work within about three to five days. However, all swelling will not be gone for weeks or even a few months. Heavy lifting and strenuous exercise cannot be performed by a liposuction patient for several weeks, until cleared by their plastic surgeon. However, results of liposuction often make it worth the recovery sacrifices.
Results: CoolSculpting ® Versus Liposuction
CoolSculpting ® results will not appear on the body until the immune system and other systems of the body have effectively eliminated the frozen fat cells. This takes about two months for most patients. Until that time, there will be no visible changes as a result of CoolSculpting ®. At two months or so, the patient will see about 30 to 35 percent reduction of fat on their treated areas.
Liposuction, on the other hand, provides some immediate, short term and long term gratification for patients. Liposuction is like a gift which keeps giving, in that the body goes through several phases of adjustment with improvements continuing over a long period.
Immediately upon leaving surgery, patients will notice changes to their body’s shape and size. Once swelling has decreased over the next few days and bandages are first removed, the patient sees marked improvement in the body’s shape, size and tone. Finally, over the next months following liposuction, patients continue to see subtle improvements. Those improvements lead most patients to remark that they have their best results achieved at about a year following their liposuction.
When it comes to the debate of CoolSculpting ® versus liposuction, CoolSculpting ® may win many patients over due to the absence of invasive surgery, therefore the absence of recovery time.
Whether you choose the non-invasive CoolSculpting ® or the invasive liposuction or liposculpture surgery, rest assured that we are here to provide you with both options since you will be seen at the office of Dr. Siamak Agha, a board certified plastic surgeon who specializes in body contouring surgeries. We will be happy to provide you with a complimentary consultation to see whether you will be best served by CoolSculpting ® or liposuction surgery. Call us on 949-337-1431 for an appointment.