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Frustrated by persistent fat in trouble spots even though you exercise regularly and have a healthy diet? The "fat freezing" CoolSculpting® treatment at our Calgary-area clinic in Airdrie is an innovative, non-invasive solution that reduces fat without downtime.

CoolSculpting Before-and-After Photos

Coolsculpting before and after 30 days

Photos courtesy of Allergan. Your results may vary.

Chart showing the stages in the CoolSculpting procedure

How Does CoolSculpting Work?

If CoolSculpting destroys fat cells by "freezing" them, why doesn't the treatment damage the skin or other cells? The process used during CoolSculpting—called cryolipolysis—kills fat cells but isn't cold enough to damage 1.

The CoolSculpting system takes advantage of this science by delivering intense cold to targeted areas of a person's body from the outside without a single incision or injection. Its controlled cooling damages the fat cells, which eventually die off and are flushed out of the body through natural processes. This means results develop gradually over the course of 2 or 3 months and sometimes as long as 6 months; individual results may vary. A single treatment session can result in a fat reduction of about 20%2.

What Areas Can CoolSculpting Treat?

CoolSculpting helps people target specific areas of concentrated fat, but it's not meant for major weight loss. The best candidates for this procedure are near their ideal weights but have trouble spots they'd like to contour. CoolSculpting works best in the following areas:

Diagram showing the areas which are often treated by CoolSculpting
  • Abdomen
  • Flanks
  • Lower back
  • "Bra bulge" on the upper back
  • Hips
  • Thighs
  • Upper arm

Additionally, the CoolMini™ applicator is designed specifically to fit below the chin to reduce neck fat that causes the appearance of a double chin. Dr. Jason McWhirter evaluates each patient's desired treatment area to determine whether CoolSculpting is a good option.

What Happens During a CoolSculpting Treatment?

During a CoolSculpting session, Dr. McWhirter or a member of his medical team secures the appropriate applicator to the treatment area. If the targeted area has pinchable fat, the applicator uses vacuum suction to gently pull the fat bulge between 2 cooling plates. Flat applicators are used for areas such as the outer thighs that don't have pinchable fat.

Most patients describe the treatments as just mildly uncomfortable, akin to the cold and numbing sensation of holding an ice pack against the skin.

Treatment times vary, depending on the area targeted. Most take at least 30 to 45 minutes. No downtime is necessary after treatment, although there can be some mild swelling, tingling, redness, or bruising that typically fades within a few days. Most patients see results with a single treatment, but many return for further fat reduction. Over the months that follow treatment, fat gradually melts away, leaving slimmer contours behind.

CoolSculpting may work even better when combined with a GliSODin® cleanse and detox treatment and a good nutritional and exercise support plan. Patients can maintain their results indefinitely by living a healthy lifestyle.

CoolSculpting Frequently Asked Questions

Is CoolSculpting better than liposuction?

Liposuction is a surgical procedure that removes unwanted fat by suctioning it from the body through small incisions made by a surgeon. CoolSculpting is non-invasive. That means there are no incisions, no injections, and no downtime. Because the fat freezing process used by CoolSculpting gradually destroys fat cells, the results emerge gradually, unlike the immediate results produced by liposuction. CoolSculpting is also less costly than liposuction.

How do I prepare for a CoolSculpting treatment?

There are no special preparations needed before getting a CoolSculpting procedure. We recommend you wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothes and bring along a book or mobile device that you can use during the treatment.

Does the extreme cold damage the skin?

No. Fat freezes at a higher temperature than skin and other tissues, which makes CoolSculpting safe and effective for targeted fat removal. CoolSculpting's proprietary technology targets only fat cells, leaving healthy tissue undamaged and untouched.

How will I know if I need more than 1 procedure?

Getting the results you desire often requires multiple treatments, but the number of sessions will depend on a person's body type and cosmetic goals. Although you may notice preliminary results emerge as soon as 3 weeks after your appointment, your final results may take 2 or 3 months to be seen. This varies from patient to patient. If a few months or more have elapsed since your last treatment and you're unsatisfied with your results, you may contact ReNue to schedule a follow-up appointment with Dr. McWhirter. He can evaluate your targeted areas and recommend a treatment plan.

Do I have to limit physical activity after a CoolSculpting treatment?

No. Because CoolSculpting doesn't require an incision, anesthesia, or sedation, you're free to resume your normal activities immediately. The targeted area may appear red and swollen for several hours, and some people report feeling some soreness for a day or so following the procedure. However, these side effects are typically mild and don't hinder patients from getting back to their normal activities.

What kind of results can I expect from CoolSculpting?

Most patients see a total fat loss of about 20% after a series of sessions.2 For many, this loss results in a "just right" appearance and helps motivate them to keep up good habits to maintain their new contours. CoolSculpting is especially suited to people who are already at or near healthy weights but wish to address smaller, specific pockets of fat. This makes CoolSculpting an excellent liposuction alternative for many Calgary-area men and women.

What if my fat comes back?

The number of fat cells adults have is set. We gain weight when fat cells enlarge, not because we add new cells. Fat cells shrink when we lose weight. CoolSculpting destroys fat cells, which are then removed from the body. The fat cells eliminated by CoolSculpting will never return.1 However, CoolSculpting will not prevent future weight gain—your remaining fat cells can still expand. Eating right and exercising are crucial to maintaining your results.

If you're looking for a CoolSculpting provider in Calgary, our status as a CoolSculpting Certified Practice attracts many patients to ReNue's Airdrie clinic. You can learn more about this fat freezing procedure by requesting a consultation using the online form or by calling us at (403) 945-0350 and having one of our helpful staff members schedule your appointment.

1Zelickson B., Egbert B.M., Preciado J., Allison J., Springer K., Manstein D., Cryolipolysis for Noninvasive Fat Cell Destruction: Initial Results from a Pig Model, Dermatologic Surgery: 2009; 35(10):1462-1470.

2Coleman S.R., Sachdeva K., Egbert B.M. Preciado J., Allison J., Clinical efficacy of noninvasive cryolipolysis and its effects on peripheral nerves, Aesthetic Plastic Surgery: 2009; 33(4):482-488.

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