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Do fat cells return after CoolSculpting?

Dr. Dean Kane Q & A. shutterstock_88313314

Q. Hello, I was wondering if fat cells are replenished in the areas where CoolSculpting has been done. I’ve heard that fat cells naturally die off and are replaced, so what’s stopping your body from replacing the fat cells that are killed off via CoolSculpting… say after a year. Currently, the CoolSculpting site says, “Patients experiencing fat layer reduction show persistent results at least six months after the CoolSculpting treatment”. Does that mean results are temporary?

A. ​​​It is currently believed that following adolescence, fat cells stop multiplying (hyperplasia) but will grow in size (hypertrophy).

​Each of us is genetically pre-determined to increase or decrease fat volume differently. Men tend to be “apples” with fat growth around the organs of the tummy and women tend to become “pears” with fat growth in the hips and thigh but there is quite a variation among individuals. Patients consider fat reduction in areas that will not genetically reduce in volume with dieting, such as the:

  1. ​Love handles
  2. ​Breast rolls
  3. ​Upper, middle and lower tummy
  4. ​Outer and inner thighs and knees
  5. ​And many other areas.

​Once fat cells die with Coolsculpting or are removed with liposuction or excision, they will not return or multiply but the remaining cells in the area and cells in other areas of the body may grow in size with weight gain.

  • ​CoolSculpting effects are limited to the area within the cooling plates and up to a 20% reduction in fat volume. This leaves 80% of the fat cells to fill further.
  • ​Liposuction can reduce up to 80-90% of the fat cells leaving 10-20% of the fats cells to increase in volume.
  • ​Surgical excision such as with a tummy tuck will remove 100% of the fat cells.

You must consider eating less or increasing your calorie expenditure with exercise by the amount of fat lost from a procedure to maintain your weight. All these procedures are body contouring and not weight loss options.

​I hope this has been helpful. All the best!

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