In the world of non-invasive fat reduction procedures, CoolSculpting reigns supreme. Developed by Zeltiq Aesthetics and subsequently acquired by Allergan, CoolSculpting has been cleared by the FDA since 2010. The primary concept, underpinning CoolSculpting, exploits the remarkable fact that adipose tissue (in other words fat cells) freezes at higher temperatures than surrounding tissues. The procedure, therefore, utilizes controlled cooling to target subcutaneous fat cells, leaving neighboring skin, muscle, and nerve tissues unharmed.
The Scientific Evidence for CoolSculpting
Substantial evidence supports the science behind CoolSculpting. For instance, Mayo Clinic reports that research has shown CoolSculpting as an effective fat reduction method. Here’s how it works – when subjected to specific cooling temperatures, fat cells undergo a process called cryolipolysis, which is a naturally occurring apoptosis, or controlled cell death, leading to the release of cytokines and other inflammatory mediators. Over time, the fat cells shrink and begin to die as the patient’s body metabolizes them, and they’re naturally removed from the body.
CoolSculpting Temperature—Does it Matter?
One of the leading questions when it comes to CoolSculpting is whether the temperature applied during the procedure plays a significant role in its success. The answer is a resounding yes.
Adipose tissue, or fat cells, have been found to be more vulnerable to cold injury than the surrounding water-rich cells. This is due to the higher lipid content of fat cells, allowing them to solidify, or freeze, at higher temperatures than the water in nearby cells. The unique vulnerability of fat cells to cooling, allows CoolSculpting technology to safely deliver precisely controlled cooling to gently and effectively target the fat cells beneath the skin without affecting the skin itself.
Optimal Temperature Range for CoolSculpting
To harness the power of cryolipolysis, the CoolSculpting machine needs to hit the “sweet spot” of cooling temperatures which is between -11 to -7 degrees Celsius (12 to19 degrees Fahrenheit). It’s important to emphasize that this temperature range is the point at which the device cools the skin’s surface, and not the temperature of the skin itself. Achieving and maintaining accurate surface cooling is a highly technical aspect of CoolSculpting that requires precision and expertise.
The Risks of Deviating from the Optimal Temperature Range
The risk of CoolSculpting hinges on the accuracy of temperature control. Using a temperature that is too high could result in ineffective fat reduction, while a temperature that is too low can lead to frostbite or first-degree burns around the treatment area. Herein lies the importance of going to a highly experienced and specially trained technician when seeking to have CoolSculpting done.
Addressing CoolSculpting Myths
Despite the overwhelming evidence supporting CoolSculpting, there are misconceptions about the procedure. A common myth is that CoolSculpting has a freezing effect on the entire body. However, the reality is that only the targeted area is subjected to precise cooling temperatures. Moreover, contrary to popular belief, no part of the body, including fat cells, are frozen during the procedure. Instead, they enter a process of apoptosis, or natural death, in response to the cooling, which is subsequently cleared away by the immune system.
Final Thoughts on CoolSculpting
CoolSculpting literally shapes the body by freezing unwanted fat cells without surgery or downtime. But behind the impressive results lies a scientific process that is both precise and elegant. For anyone contemplating the procedure, understanding the science behind CoolSculpting and the importance of temperature control is essential. By all means, consult with an experienced CoolSculpting provider who has the required training and resources to deliver the desired results safely and effectively.
Mayo Clinic – CoolSculpting Temperature.