Recently, there has been much talk about freezing — and no, we’re not referring to Scotland’s winter temperatures. Instead, Cryolipolysis, the medical term for freezing fat see more, is one of the hot topics in non – invasive body sculpting, which is to lose fat without injections, blades, or actual downtime.

Woman getting cryolipolysis fat treatment procedure in professional cosmetic cabinet or spa center, closeup

What you need to know about body fat

Let’s begin with the fundamentals. There are various kinds of fat, and they are not all the same. The fat found in our bodies is divided into subcutaneous fat (the type that collects under your pants’ waistband) and visceral fat (the stuff that lines your organs and is associated with diabetes and heart disease).

When we talk about fat from now on, we’re referring to subcutaneous fat because that’s what cryolipolysis is designed to remove. Unfortunately, according to the results of a recent study, the body’s ability to eliminate subcutaneous fat diminishes with age, meaning we face a challenge with each passing year.

Everything from ice-pops to fat freezing has been done.

Part of the inspiration for cryolipolysis came from what happens when kids eat ice-pops, which is a fancy way of saying cold fat destruction (lysis). This isn’t a prank. A phenomenon referred to as “cold-induced fat necrosis” piqued the interest of the process’ creators after youngsters ate ice-pops that had been accidentally left on their cheeks for several minutes. Inflammation in the fat was found in skin samples collected from children with this condition, but the skin on top was normal. As a result, fat appeared to be more vulnerable to extreme cold injury than other tissue types.

To test whether fat cells could be selectively destroyed, researchers in 2007 used this concept to cool pigs. Again, the results were encouraging and predictable; in the treated areas, the pig’s fat layer shrank by about half an inch without causing any damage to the skin above it. CoolSculpting, the first cryolipolysis procedure approved for human use, became available as a treatment for love handles in 2010. Other body parts, such as the thighs, tummy, bra fat, back, lower portion of the buttocks, and chin, were cleared for treatment shortly after.

Research has shown an average fat loss of 15 to 28 per cent approximately four months after initial treatment.

What is Fat Freezing?

Cryolipolysis, also known as fat freezing, is a non-surgical fat reduction technique that utilizes cold temperatures to reduce fat deposits in specific body parts. The procedure aims to minimize concentrated fat deposits or bulges that don’t go away with diet and exercise. Therefore, obese, or significantly overweight people should avoid it. CoolSculptingTM is the trademarked name for the procedure.

Areas of your body cryolipolysis are most effective:

Cryolipolysis has been best known for treating fat deposits under the chin, upper arms, thighs, stomach, hips (“love handles”), upper and lower back, and beneath the buttocks.

How does cryolipolysis work?

The treatment can be carried out in an outpatient clinic or a doctor’s office. A skin-marking pencil is used to outline the treatment area after determining the shape and size of the fatty deposit. During the procedure, patients are awake and conscious.

The fat cells (adipocytes) under the skin are frozen using a hand-held device called an applicator. First, a gel pad is placed on the affected area to protect it. After that, the fat bulge is vacuumed or suctioned into the applicator’s large hole. As the suction is applied, you may experience a tugging or pulling sensation. As the treated area becomes numb with the intense cold, feelings such as tingling, stinging, aching, cramping will reduce. Next, the fat deposit is gradually cooled to a target temperature between 30 and 39.2 degrees Fahrenheit.

A single area can be treated in as little as an hour. The applicator is discarded following the treatment of the affected area. Massage the area for two to three minutes to help break down fat cells.

By what method are fat deposits cells demolished?

According to research, fat cells are more easily damaged by low temperatures than other types of cells, such as skin cells. This technique takes advantage of this fact. The low temperature harms the fat cells. Fat cells are killed when an injury triggers the body’s inflammatory response. There are white blood cells called macrophages, part of our immune system and are “called to the injury location” to remove dead fat cells and other waste from our bodies after an injury.

To what extent and when will cryolipolysis help me lose stubborn localized fat deposits?

At around four months after the initial treatment, research findings have shown an average fat loss of between 15% and 28%. The time between treatment and noticing changes is variable. After about two months, there is a noticeable improvement.

What are the benefits of cryolipolysis?

Fat freezing has a many advantages:

  • There is no need for a surgical incision.
  • The procedure carries a low level of risk. There isn’t any danger of getting sick from this.
  • The treatment can be performed in an outpatient setting.
  • No anaesthesia or sedation is required before the procedure.
  • In a single session, more than one part of the body can be treated.
  • After treatment, most patients can return to their regular routines right away.
  • People of any age can benefit from the procedure.
  • No nerves, blood vessels, muscles, or long-term damage to the skin are harmed during the treatment.
  • Cells that have been damaged or destroyed are removed from the body for good.
  • Patients’ self-esteem may improve as a result of the cosmetic procedure.

Cryolipolysis has some drawbacks.

Cryolipolysis has several disadvantages including:

  • Only people in good general health, free of neurological or orthopaedic problems, and desiring “location” fat loss in specific body regions should consider this procedure. Cryolipolysis should be avoided by those who are considerably overweight or obese.
  • After healing, the skin’s surface may be uneven or patchily smooth.
  • In some cases, more than one session is required to see the desired results.
  • If more than one treatment session is required, the next treatment cannot be done until six to eight weeks after the first. This is because damaged fat cells can remain in the body for an extended period of time before they are excreted.
  • It takes time to see the results. For best results, allow 3 to 6 months since fat cells are gradually removed from the body.
  • Paradoxical adipose hyperplasia is a rare but serious side effect that can arise from taking this medication. After cryolipolysis, fat cells swell up in size in this extremely rare condition. Men and people of Hispanic origin are more likely to be affected.
  • After cryolipolysis, it’s possible to put on more weight. Other parts of the body can accumulate fat as well.

What types of individuals should not undergo cryolipolysis?

Clients who are obese or significantly overweight should not have Cryolipolysis performed. In addition, people who have skin lesions, severe varicose veins, dermatitis or other cuts or injuries should also not have cryolipolysis.

People with abnormally high or low tolerances for cold are not suitable. In addition, people with the following conditions should not undergo the procedure:

  • There’s something called Raynaud’s syndrome. A rare disorder in which low temperatures can prevent blood from flowing to the hands and feet.
  • Cryoglobulinemia. This type of vasculitis (inflammation of the blood vessels) can solidify or gel when exposed to cold temperatures. It’s linked to things like blood vessel blockages and other issues.
  • Cold hemoglobinuria comes and goes in fits and starts. An extremely rare autoimmune disorder in which the red blood cells are harmed by the cold.
  • Urticaria with a cold sting. A rare disorder whereby the skin generates red, itchy spots (hives) due to exposure to low temperatures.
  • Cold agglutinin disease is a rare but severe condition. Hemolytic anaemia is uncommon in which the immune system attacks and kills its red blood cells in error. Cold temperatures can set off or exacerbate the condition.

Other health issues that should have this treatment include:

  • Breast-feeding or pregnancy
  • diabetic neuropathy is one example of a nerve disorder.
  • Skin inflammations and rashes
  • Diseases of the immune system that manifest as skin conditions, such as eczema and psoriasis

What are the immediate side effects of cryolipolysis?

The following are possible short-term side effects for the treated areas:

  • Ache or throbbing
  • A burning or stinging sensation occurs when you touch something or someone.
  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Bruising or discolouration of the skin
  • a feeling of sensitivity or numbness in the skin
  • After treatment, side effects may last from several days up. You may be prescribed an analgesic by your physician to alleviate your pain or other soreness.

How many sessions of cryolipolysis are typically required?

You may only need one treatment session to address your problem area. On the other hand, more than one problem area may necessitate treatment, or more than one treatment in a particular area may be required to meet your objectives. You and your doctor will develop a treatment plan – and the number of visits – that best suits your needs.