Let’s start this on a lighter note as to how cryolipolysis came about; it was rumored that doctors noticed fat degradation in the cheeks of children who consumed a lot of ice pops. Funny right?
This fairy tale was, however, given credence by Jason Roostaeian, a UCLA Profession, and plastic surgeon. He opined that fat is temperature-sensitive, more than how a healthy skin reacts to temperature. The cells in the fat die quickly than the skin when exposed to extreme cold. Cryolipolysis is not a new technology; it was approved by the Food and Drugs Administration in 2010.
Just like how liposuction is carried out by plastic surgeons, cryolipolysis is a cosmetic and non-invasive method of reducing body fat. Fat cells in the affected part of the body are frozen to reduce the fat. This is mostly done on body parts that are difficult to remove fats either by diet or exercising. Cryolipolysis is often the last and non-invasive method to rid fat in stubborn parts of the body. Being a non-invasive method, there is zero use of surgery, anesthetic, or cuts. When compared with even liposuction, cryolipolysis is safer and with lesser risk.
How Cryolipolysis is Carried Out
You may come across this as cool sculpting, it is another name for Cryolipolysis. Being an FDA-approved method, it simply relies on freezing temperatures to kill fat cells. A cryolipolysis session is done by vacuuming the skin surrounding the fatty tissue. This cools or freezes the fat cells immediately. The temperature may numb the area, which could mean the fat cells are being disconnected from the rest of the body as a result of the cold.
After assessing the fat deposit, the area to be treated is marked out using a skin marking pencil. With an applicator, the fat cells under the skin is frozen. But before this, there will be an application of a gel pad to protect the skin upon the fat cells.
The area will be vacuumed into the applicator opening. Gradually, the marked area is cooled to between 30.2 and 39.2 degrees Fahrenheit. During this period, the patient may experience, in addition to intense cold, stinging, cramping, tingling, and aching. While the area is cooling down, it will become numb. To get the best results, a 2 to 3 minutes massage may be applied to the treated area.
A cryolipolysis session might take between 30 to 60 minutes. There may be soreness around the area where cold is applied, just like what you might experience after an intense workout. However, you should note that cryolipolysis does not produce an immediate result, it may take between 4 to 6 months for the elimination of the fat cells, an average decrease of 20% will occur during this period.
How Effective is This Procedure?
In comparison to other fat reduction methods, cryolipolysis usually records a higher success rate. Aside from the success, this method also comes with few side effects when compared with other fat reduction procedures.
However, it is pertinent to state that despite how successful cryolipolysis is said to be, it is not a miracle solution that removes fat cells in a twinkle of an eye. It takes time, and also your lifestyle options during this time play important roles. When undergoing cryolipolysis, what you eat and how you work out will have a significant effect. It’s just like spending hours in the gym every week without a corresponding change to your diet.
A 2015 study published in the Aesthetic Surgery Journal, 16 studies on cryolipolysis were considered. In these studies, a cumulative average of 19.55 percent of fat reduction was achieved by those who underwent cryolipolysis procedures. Another review by the Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, the scholars examined 19 studies that relied on Cryolipolysis. When a caliper was used in measuring the fat reduction, the was an average of 14.67 to 28.5% fat reduction. This figure was, however, lower when it was subjected to ultrasound, the numbers dropped to 10.3% to 25.5% reduction in fat.
These reviews also considered the potential side effects of cryolipolysis; no significant health risk was discovered. Being a purely cosmetic procedure, there was no adverse effect on either the liver or lipid functions. In another study carried out in 2014, applying massage to the area may further contribute to higher fat reduction. This was observed over two months. The position was also corroborated in a 2015 study where bleeding, scarring, change in skin pigmentation, and other serious complication were not discovered.