Dr. Kirby's Blog

CoolSculpting vs. Liposuction: Which is the Right Choice for Me?

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You’ve stuck to your workout plan and eaten like a saint for months…yet your clothes still don’t fit quite the way you want. If this sounds familiar, it’s perfectly logical (and smart) to look into options for reducing stubborn fat.

For many of our Fort Worth fat reduction patients, the decision comes down to two procedures: CoolSculpting vs. liposuction. When performed by a qualified provider, both can work very well to reduce fat pockets and improve your shape with lasting results.  The best way to determine which is best for you is to consult with an experienced board certified plastic surgeon. That said, asking yourself some key questions can help you get a better idea of which procedure might better suit your needs and goals.

Which areas do I want to treat?

Liposuction is good for treating a wide variety of areas on the body—a skilled plastic surgeon can adjust her tools and techniques to remove a larger amount of fat on the abdomen, a very small amount of fat around the knees, or anything in between. CoolSculpting is best suited to specific areas where the pre-sized applicators can be placed, such as the inner or outer thighs, lower abdomen, flanks, or underneath the chin.

How many areas do I want to treat?

CoolSculpting is a great option to reduce one or two problem areas in a quick treatment with no downtime. However, if you have multiple treatment areas or want to lose a larger amount of fat, liposuction may be more cost-effective—and will achieve final results sooner—than undergoing an extended series of CoolSculpting treatments.

Do I want to dramatically change my shape?

CoolSculpting is primarily a fat reduction procedure. It destroys fat cells throughout the entire treatment area, helping to achieve an overall reduction in the size of a fat deposit. If you generally like your shape, but you want to shrink a persistent fat bulge, CoolSculpting can help you achieve this goal without surgery or downtime.

With liposuction, an experienced plastic surgeon has much greater control over the amount and pattern of fat removal. If you’d like very precise sculpting—for instance, you want to have a more hourglass-like lower body—then liposuction is most likely to get you the results you want.

How much downtime am I willing/able to take?

With liposuction, you will need several days off from work and from daily activities to recover. The payoff is that you will have precise amounts of fat reduction and body sculpting with predictable results (you’ll see your new shape as soon as post-op swelling resolves). Your plastic surgeon can also sculpt multiple areas at once.

If you prefer a zero-downtime option, CoolSculpting is it! The procedure is non-invasive and can be performed in-office in less than an hour for most areas. And if you’re wondering “does CoolSculpting hurt?”—you’ll feel intense cold for several minutes, which can be uncomfortable at first, but most patients don’t find it painful. The trade-off with Coolsculpting is that results are not as immediately dramatic compared to liposuction, and it takes about 3 months for your body to metabolize affected fat cells. The results can be noticeable after only one treatment, but generally additional sessions are desired to attain the patient’s goal.

What is my budget?

Without associated anesthesia or operating room fees associated, CoolSculpting costs less up-front than liposuction per procedure. This makes it a fantastic value for two types of patients:

  • Those with a goal of moderate fat reduction in one or two areas—these patients can usually achieve fully satisfying results after 1 to 2 CoolSculpting sessions.
  • Those who are on a stricter budget and would prefer to pay a smaller amount to achieve some fat reduction—these patients can make progress on their goals at a lower cost, and choose to pursue liposuction in the future if they wish.

If your plastic surgeon recommends liposuction to achieve your goals, consider that the cost of a single liposuction surgery is usually less in the long run compared to multiple CoolSculpting sessions. That said, multiple CoolSculpting sessions can be well worth it for the right patient for the convenience it offers—CoolSculpting is truly a lunchtime procedure—and its ability to reduce fat without scars, surgery or downtime. Financing is available so you can pay for either procedure over time.

Considering Fort Worth CoolSculpting or liposuction? Come see us for a consultation.

Having options is a great thing, especially when it comes to something as personal as your appearance. But it also means you have the task of figuring out the right choice for you. The good news is that you don’t have to figure out the right fat reduction treatment on your own. We offer both liposuction and the latest CoolSculpting technology at Kirby Plastic Surgery to ensure our patients have a full range of options to reduce fat from head to toe. If you are in the Fort Worth area, I invite you to contact my office for a personal consultation to discuss what results you might expect from each of these safe, proven fat reduction treatments.

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