Dr. Dean Kane Q & A
Q. I had CoolSculpting done on my abdomen 9 days ago on each side and noticed I have hard lumps around my belly button area, more so on the left. I can’t squeeze it and my belly button feels like a rock even though I’ve been trying to massage the area twice a day. Will this go away on its own? I’m quite concerned.
A. Zeltiq markets CoolSculpting to reduce subcutaneous body fat through a process called apoptosis. The cooling injury to the fat cells alters the DNA such that the fat cell involutes and is carried away by immune white cells.
Clinically, I see another activity that may further enhance fat cell destruction. This is direct injury to the fat cell with a normal “foreign body” inflammatory response. It is this well known that swelling, induration, scar or collagen production develop with this process. This maybe the firmness you feel. Swelling will start to subside by 2 to 3 weeks leaving you with scar production and lumpiness. The remodeling of the fat injury begins at 2-3 months and the firmness will soften.
While rare, “PAH” or paradoxical adipose hyperplasia can occur but not this early in the post-CS process. It the fat seems to become fuller after 2-3 months, re-consult with your CS Specialist to re-examine you.
Massage and anti-inflammatories such as ibuprofen or naprosyn are my recommendations for swelling, induration and flattening.
I hope this has helped. Contact your CS Specialist for on-going care. I wish you well.