Albany, NY (September 2012) – Whether it be love handles, a spare tire or the dreaded muffin top, fat has always had a way of hanging around. But, thanks to a new procedure using a controlled cooling applicator, there is a new non-invasive way to remove unwanted fat cells.
Photo Courtesy of CoolSculpting
Dr. Jeffrey Rockmore, a surgeon with The Plastic Surgery Group in Albany, explains how the CoolSculpting system works.
"There's a machine that you're hooked up to and it has two cold panels that, by and large, suck the fat and the skin up in between these panels," Rockmore said. "Then, it uses a very sensitive and specific temperature that affects the fat cells while preserving the overlying skin."
Because fat cells are susceptible to cold, when they're subjected to prolonged exposure to cold, they initiate a sequence called "apoptosis," or programmed cell death.
So how this kind of technology come about? We might have the popsicles in our freezer to thank.
"Children would chew popsicles and they would get, in some instances, a little hard spot in their cheeks if they sucked on a Popsicle for too long," Rockmore said. "That was the fat cells being effected by the cold from the Popsicle, and over time that would dissipate. So, being able to extrapolate that into something a little bit more meaningful, they've been able to come up with this new technology that works pretty well."
The first inclination is that with your fat being pulled into a machine and then dying over the course of a few weeks, the process would hurt. But, not exactly.
"The treatment itself is about 50 minutes," Rockmore said. "And you do have to lay there for 50 minutes with this cold panel on. In that 50 minutes, the first five minutes you'll feel a kind of pulling sensation, as the fat is getting placed in between the two cold panels. Then it gets cold."
Photo Courtesy of CoolSculpting
He says once the area goes numb, most people will read books or watch movies while they wait.
"Really, in terms of procedures that we do, it is one of the safest things that are on the market and it's also one of the few that has proven results," Rockmore said. "What's nice about CoolSculpting is that it is FDA approved. It's been extensively studied and has fairly consistent and predictable results. When you combine safety with results, that's when people are their happiest."
Once the $1,500 session is completed, the body goes to work. As the fat cells begin to die, the body metabolizes the cells and smoothing out the contours of the patient's body. In addition, unlike liposuction or other invasive surgeries, CoolSculpting requires no down time.
Rockmore says the procedure is not for everyone, though.
"The perfect patient, and not everyone is the perfect patient obviously, is someone who is within a reasonable range of their ideal body weight and follows a reasonable diet and exercises, but has an area of unwanted fat," Rockmore said.
With each one to two hour session, about 20 percent of the fat is removed. Though 20 percent does not seem like much, there is a noticeable improvement compared to before the appointment. In addition, those who would like more improvement may go back to have more sessions done, until there are only a select amount of fat cells left.
Currently, CoolSculpting technology is offered in four locations within 100 miles of Utica, with two offices in the Syracuse area and another two offices in near Albany.
Fore more information and to learn more about CoolSculpting, visit their website here.