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What are the Side Effects of CoolSculpting?

One of the reasons why people opt to have non-surgical fat reduction procedures, such as CoolSculpting, is because of their minimal risk. Compared to having plastic surgery, the downtime and recovery period is shorter and there’s a greater guarantee of reversible adverse effects. However, that doesn’t mean that non-invasive treatments like CoolSculpting are completely free from side effects.

So what are the expected side effects of CoolSculpting? In general, the side effects that are expected from CoolSculpting are minimal, which may include feeling painful or aching sensations, skin hypersensitivity, and manifestations of temporary irritation. The severe adverse reaction of the procedure is paradoxical adipose hyperplasia where the frozen fat cells increase in size, but these are rare, and the benefits of CoolSculpting have proven to outweigh its risks.

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Expected Side Effects of CoolSculpting

Non-invasive body contouring procedures are synonymous with having “minimal risk” instead of “no risk”. It’s impossible for any kind of procedure to be risk-free, especially since each individual body reacts differently to a procedure, equipment, and technology used for a treatment. The following are some of the common and expected CoolSculpting side effects:

  • Painful or aching sensation
  • Manifestations of skin irritation
  • Paradoxical adipose hyperplasia

1) Painful or Aching Sensation

As the CoolSculpting procedure starts, you will feel slight discomfort as the CoolSculpting applicator applies controlled cooling to the subcutaneous fat underneath the skin. Then as the treatment progresses, you’ll feel numb from the extremely cold temperature, but you’ll start to experience the following different kinds of sensations around the treatment area as a CoolSculpting side effect:

  • Pulling
  • Tugging
  • Tingling
  • Stinging
  • Cramping

Slight pain and aching may be felt around the treated area during and after the CoolSculpting treatment. Aside from that, extremely cold sensations will also be experienced as a common side effect because of the exposure to cool temperatures.

2) Skin Irritation

Due to the cold temperature that the skin has been exposed to, CoolSculpting patients may have extremely sensitive skin in the treated area that’s susceptible to skin irritations. These usually resolve on their own within weeks, but it’s best to know that the CoolSculpting treatment will result in the following:

  • Itching
  • Swelling 
  • Tenderness
  • Skin discoloration 
  • Redness
  • Bruising

If you’re already vulnerable to skin irritation before your CoolSculpting treatment session, you should consult with a plastic surgeon or health care provider to disclose your medical history and confirm if CoolSculpting is the right cosmetic treatment for you. Consequently, you should also prepare yourself for the risks of the cosmetic procedure if you have the following:

  • Raynaud’s disease
  • Severe sensitivity to cool temperatures

3) Paradoxical Adipose Hyperplasia

A rare side effect of CoolSculpting is paradoxical adipose hyperplasia, which is a severe condition. Fat freezing in treatments like CoolSculpting works by causing fat cells to expand using cool temperatures, which will then burst and the dead fat cells will be absorbed by the body. However, there are cases where the frozen fat cells in the treatment area merely increase in size.

The exact reason why this CoolSculpting risk occurs is still unknown. In addition, it’s common for this to occur in a CoolSculpting procedure in a male patient. Despite its severity, it’s more of a cosmetic side effect than a physically dangerous one. This is also reversible and corrected using liposuction or other dermatological surgery methods.

Downtime and Recovery From CoolSculpting Treatments

After your CoolSculpting treatment session, you can immediately return to your daily normal activities immediately. There are instances when the expected side effects are treated after the cosmetic procedure, which typically subside sometime within a few weeks. So there’s little to no downtime after CoolSculpting, and the recovery period is shorter compared to other methods such as dermatological surgery, laser treatment, or liposuction.

What to Know About CoolSculpting Maintenance Treatments

The intended results for CoolSculpting and even CoolSculpting Elite aren’t always achieved after a single session. Depending on how your body reacts to the cosmetic treatment and metabolizes dead fat cells, sometimes it takes multiple sessions to achieve the intended result of CoolSculpting. Similarly, if you want to target a different area in the body, you may also have more CoolSculpting treatment sessions.

In addition, multiple treatment sessions don’t entail that more unwanted fat will be eliminated so the CoolSculpting procedure is only applicable to people who have excess weight. Generally, this treatment is a fat-loss cosmetic procedure that won’t work on individuals who have obesity. 

CoolSculpting treatment is only applicable to patients who have a healthy weight but stubborn unwanted fat deposits that can’t be eliminated by simply living a healthy lifestyle. CoolSculpting is merely a complementary cosmetic treatment to regular exercise and a healthy diet, but in no way does this replace both.

Aftercare Instructions for Faster Recovery From Side Effects of CoolSculpting

CoolSculpting treatment is a fat-freezing procedure designed to eliminate stubborn unwanted fat cells, which can cause different kinds of side effects and adverse reactions depending on how the body responds to the treatment procedure. 

To minimize CoolSculpting side effects and achieve a faster recovery period so your ideal shape can be noticeable in no time, it’s important to take note of the following aftercare instructions following your CoolSculpting treatment session:

  • Wear comfortable clothes that are sufficiently loose after the treatment
  • Move around after your CoolSculpting session
  • Apply a warm compress around the treated area
  • Slightly massage the treated area to help the muscles and the skin wakes back up
  • Keep track of the treated area during the recovery period within 2 months following the treatment session
  • Report any CoolSculpting side effects that are not showing any signs of improvement
  • Take nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID) for swelling or painful sensations

Tips to Get The Best Out of Your CoolSculpting Treatment

Taking note of the CoolSculpting side effects and following the aftercare instructions aren’t the only ways to get the best out of your treatment session. Other than the factors mentioned, you can already ensure the effectiveness of your CoolSculpting treatment by doing the following:

  • Properly prepare for your CoolSculpting treatment session
  • Switch to healthy lifestyle habits
  • Try complementary treatment options
  • Look for the best aesthetic provider

1) Properly Prepare For Your CoolSculpting Treatment Session

Unlike other treatments, preparing for CoolSculpting doesn’t require much, but it’s essential to make sure that your body is in healthy condition to have the treatment and that you’ve already discussed all your important medical information with your plastic surgeon. You must ensure the following to sufficiently prepare for the CoolSculpting treatment session:

  • Your body must be at least close to your ideal weight
  • You don’t have obesity
  • You have avoided anti-inflammatory drugs and supplements (i.e, aspirin)

2) Switch To Healthy Lifestyle Habits

CoolSculpting is for fat removal of stubborn pockets of unwanted fat that can’t be eliminated with exercise and healthy food consumption, which means that it’s not a weight loss regimen. In addition, you can still develop unwanted fat deposits after your treatment session.

So living a healthy lifestyle is still an essential element to avoid excess fat deposits in the future. To get the best out of your fat loss treatment, switch to healthy choices and options. It’s essential to start doing the following:

  • Quit smoking
  • Avoid alcohol
  • Eat a healthy balanced diet
  • Exercise regularly

3) Try Complementary Treatment Options

The purpose of CoolSculpting treatment is to eliminate excess fat deposits, so it’s not intended to tighten or smoothen skin. While some CoolSculpting patients report the skin tightening benefits of CoolSculpting, the number of CoolSculpting patients experiencing this is still insignificant. Thus, it’s still insufficient to conclude that CoolSculpting leads to skin tightening.

To ensure that you achieve the best results from the CoolSculpting treatment, trying out treatment options that are complementary to it is essential. One of the most popular treatment options to combine with CoolSculpting is Thermage, which has skin-tightening benefits. In addition, you can also consult with an aesthetician or a med spa if other treatments such as laser skin resurfacing are applicable to you.

4) Look For The Best Aesthetic Provider

The best advice to ensure that you get the best out of your CoolSculpting treatment is to look for a qualified aesthetic provider whose expertise has been proven with countless testimonials and positive reviews. It’s also essential to check out the equipment they use to ensure CoolSculpting safety and effectiveness. At the end of the day, the effectiveness and efficiency of the treatment rest in the hands of a trusted aesthetician and their med spa team.

Minimize The Side Effects of CoolSculpting With Fat Reduction Treatments at NJ Center for CoolSculpting

CoolSculpting treatment is a body contouring procedure that involves a non-invasive fat-freezing treatment procedure. Unlike other cosmetic treatments, CoolSculpting side effects are minimal and its serious adverse reaction is reversible. To ensure that you get the best out of your CoolSculpting treatment session, only seek the best aesthetic provider.

We at NJ Center For CoolSculpting provide safe and effective solutions for fat reduction using CoolSculpting. With our state-of-the-art fat-freezing technology, our aesthetic providers can help you reduce stubborn fat deposits almost instantly using the right treatment plan. Get a free quote from us or inquire about CoolSculpting today.

Freeze Away Your Stubborn Fat Like Never Before

Up to 25% Fat Reduction With CoolSculpting: Treat Yourself Today!


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What Our Clients Say About Us

  • "The treatment itself was not uncomfortable. Afterwords, I felt great. I didn't really notice anything for about 30 days. After day 30 until about a month later, I started noticing that my favorite jeans were not as tight anymore. I wasn't having to suck in to get them buttoned. And by that two month period after my CoolSculpting

    Lesley Hamilton

    Age 41

  • "It's subtle at first, and then a month later you look and go, "Wow - It really did something!" It really moved the bar for me, and I'm feeling better about myself already. It feels so good to put on anything and know I look as good as I've ever looked. And I didn't say that or feel that when I was in my 20's, 30's, and 40's."

    Anne McMarthy

    Age 56

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