For many of us, one of the biggest sources of body insecurities comes from having extra fat bulges that don’t want to disappear, especially around our stomachs. Despite healthy lifestyles, regular exercise and healthy diets, we often still struggle with areas of stubborn fat on our abdomen, flanks, and thighs. These extra fat cells can prevent many of us from feeling fully confident in our own bodies. Fortunately, through the innovation of CoolSculpting® treatment, we can now have stubborn belly fat eliminated without the need for plastic surgery or any recovery time. If you have been struggling with unwanted fat bulges, CoolSculpting may be the right treatment for you.
CoolSculpting is an innovative fat reduction technique that eliminates fat cells through a fat freezing treatment. The principle of CoolSculpting works through the science of cryolipolysis. Through observing the way children developed temporary dimples in their cheeks while eating frozen popsicles, it was discovered that fat cells can be reduced when the area is frozen. CoolSculpting treatment utilizes this principle of cryolipolysis to remove fat cells in many areas of the body. CoolSculpting is FDA cleared to eliminate body fat in nine target areas on the body, including love handles, upper arms, double chin, inner thighs, outer thighs, and the lower abdomen, and bra fat. Depending on the different areas of the body, different applicators are used for the various treatment area. The result is that the fat cells are eliminated in a quick, effective, and painless way, with no recovery time. CoolSculpting treatment results in a slimmer, more contoured look, to the various areas of your body, in as little as one treatment session!
If you’re tired of seeing stubborn fat on your stomach and want to improve the way you look and feel, NYC board-certified dermatologist Dr. Michele Green is here to help. Dr. Green was one of the first cosmetic dermatologists in New York City to incorporate CoolSculpting into her private, Upper East Side NYC dermatology practice. With over 10 years of experience with non-invasive body contouring like CoolSculpting, Velashape and Thermage, Dr. Green is an expert in the field. Dr. Green is consistently voted as one of the best dermatologists in NYC by Castle Connolly, the New York Times, Super Doctors, and New York Magazine. Please contact the office today to learn more about CoolSculpting and develop a customized body contouring treatment plan designed for you.
What is CoolSculpting?
CoolSculpting is an FDA-approved cosmetic treatment to reduce fat cells in various areas of the body, including the stomach, arms, inner and outer thighs, neck, flanks, love handles, back, and banana roll. CoolSculpting has different applicators, specifically designed for the various treatment areas of the body. The treatment works to non-invasively freeze the fat cells that are found in the subcutaneous layer of the skin, meaning the type of fat that is just below the skin’s surface. These fat cells are often harder to eliminate and can appear as bulges, even while you maintain a healthy diet and workout regimen. CoolSculpting is the ideal non-invasive procedure to reduce the appearance of these fat cells, with each treatment reducing the appearance of stubborn bulges of fat by 25%. While CoolSculpting is a highly effective treatment for reducing these fat cells, it is not a weight loss procedure.
How does CoolSculpting work?
Even if you are near your target weight, stubborn pockets of fat can still be present, creating unwanted bulges. These bulges of fat cells are typically found in the subcutaneous region, meaning they are found just below the surface of the skin. Fat in this particular area of the body is much harder to eliminate, however, CoolSculpting is a procedure specifically designed to target these stubborn fat cells. The treatment works using the FDA-approved fat reduction method called cryolipolysis. When the CoolSculpting applicator is applied to the skin, and it freezes the fat cells beneath the surface without negatively affecting the tissue on the surface of the skin. The freezing of the fat cells causes them to be destroyed and, consequently, the body is able to metabolize the cells and remove them from the body. This process is effective in “de-bulking” the area, meaning reducing the pockets of fat beneath the surface of the skin, which cause stubborn bulges of fat.
Does CoolSculpting work on Belly Fat?
Yes! CoolSculpting is incredibly effective for the stomach area, and is in fact the number one most popular area of the body to have CoolSculpting performed. Many patients walk in to an initial consultation with Dr. Green wondering, does CoolSculpting really work on the stomach?, and understandably so;it’s hard to believe that a technology could exist to truly eliminate fat cells from targeted treatments. CoolSculpting treatment uses the process of Cryolipolysis, which targets and freezes fat cells using a vacuum-like applicator. There are a variety of hand-held CoolSculpting machines that are designed to target stubborn areas of body fat. For more information on the best CoolSculpting applicator for your target areas of fat, you can visit our CoolSculpting applicator page.
Cryolipolysis operates under the scientific understanding that fat cells freeze at a higher temperature than other cells in the body, and these frozen fat cells are then able to be broken down by the lymphatic system, ridding the body of stubborn fat for good. CoolSculpting oftentimes provides patients with their desired results after their very first treatment, as dead fat cells continue to be metabolized for several weeks post-treatment. It’s important to note that CoolSculpting is not a replacement for weight loss. The CoolSculpting method is designed to eliminate fat cells, but the results can be undercut if patients have a large increase in weight post-treatment, since CoolSculpting cannot be used as a substitute for a healthy lifestyle.
What is the process of CoolSculpting for fat reduction?
The CoolSculpting treatment process for the stomach, and other areas of the body, starts with a consultation with Dr. Michele Green in her private, NYC, dermatology office. Medical photography of the various treatment areas of your body are performed for your personal medical record and your weight is documented. You will then be “fit” with the different applicators to determine which size/s which will be best to reduce these stubborn fat bulges. Dr. Green will give you a written assessment of the desired treatment areas and a comprehensive treatment plan to lead to your ideal CoolSculpting results. The time for each CoolSculpting session, number of applicators needed, and price for each treatment session will be indicated so that you can properly schedule your CoolSculpting treatment.
For many patients, only one CoolSculpting procedure is necessary for the desired results. Other patients may need multiple sessions or applicators to see the ideal cosmetic results. During the procedure, a handheld applicator will be applied to your upper, middle or lower abdomen, depending on the area of the body needed to treat. Some patients experience mild pinching or discomfort during the first few minutes of treatment as the applicator “freezes” the treatment area. Once the skin is acclimated, patients can sit comfortably for the remainder of the treatment, which can vary in length from 35 to 60 minutes, depending on your personalized treatment plan. Oftentimes, patients will bring along a good book or an iPad to entertain themselves during the CoolSculpting procedure. After treatment, the area of fat freezing is massaged for several minutes, and you can return to your daily activities without any recovery time.
CoolSculpting Results: what to expect after CoolSculpting for the stomach
After treatment, you can go back to your usual activities; CoolSculpting is a procedure with no downtime. You may experience mild tenderness, swelling, or bruising on the treated area as the skin “thaws”, but these symptoms will likely subside within the first week post-treatment. Over the next few weeks, you will begin to see the cosmetic results from the CoolSculpting procedure of your treated areas. Your cosmetic results will continue to improve for 3-4 months after your first treatment, at which point you will have a follow-up visit with Dr. Green to assess your current body contouring experience and see if more treatment sessions are needed. For many patients, more than one CoolSculpting treatment session may be necessary to achieve the best aesthetic results.
Female CoolSculpting patient, lower abdomen, 10 months post treatment
How many CoolSculpting treatments are needed for the stomach?
The most exciting aspect of CoolSculpting is that the results are truly permanent. Once the fat cells are frozen, these dead fat cells are processed naturally through the lymphatic system, and they do not return, provided that you continue to maintain a healthy lifestyle post-treatment. If you need more than one treatment, after your first treatment session, you can schedule a second CoolSculpting procedure for the target area 1 to 4 months after your first treatment. Dr. Green can give you an assessment of the number of sessions needed to treat your abdominal area during your initial consultation. Each time that you have a CoolSculpting procedure, further fat cells are eliminated, so more optimal results can be achieved with additional procedures. The first treatment session will reduce a given area by up to 25% and the second session will reduce it by up to 40%. A recent study of treating the abdominal area with a non vacuum comfortable-surface applicator, showed 100% patient satisfaction after two treatments and 83% of patients would recommend CoolSculpting to a friend.
Does CoolSculpting work on a big stomach?
CoolSculpting treatments are designed to work on a variety of body types and areas of fat and, for this reason, CoolSculpting can be applied to a stomach of any size. However, as CoolSculpting is not a replacement for weight loss, it’s important to note that you should only seek CoolSculpting treatment if you are within 30 pounds of your ideal weight. If your abdomen is large, you may need four separate small applicators to apply to the four quadrants of your abdomen, in a diamond pattern, to completely treat the area. The CoolAdvantage Plus applicator, which is a single larger treatment may be a good choice for certain patients. Studies have shown that a larger abdomen, typically needs two treatment sessions, scheduled one to four months apart. During the consultation with Dr. Green, she will help customize the best CoolSculpting treatment plan for you.
Liposuction vs. CoolSculpting for fat removal
There are many treatment options when it comes to reducing or eliminating belly fat. For that reason, patients have to ask themselves, which treatment method is best for me? The first major question to answer is whether or not patients are looking for a surgical or non-surgical method of fat reduction. Liposuction is the most common surgical procedure for the elimination of stubborn fat cells. The process can significantly reduce the fat cells in a specific area of the body but the downtime necessary following the procedure is significant. When it comes to non-surgical methods, CoolSculpting can significantly reduce the appearance of bulges without the need for surgery and has no recovery time following the procedure.
What is Liposuction?
When patients are considering their options for fat reduction, liposuction is a treatment that is frequently discussed. Liposuction is an invasive, surgical procedure performed by a plastic surgeon to eliminate fat. The procedure involves the use of a metallic rod, called a cannula, which is inserted into an incision on the body and used to remove the fat cells. Liposuction is an effective treatment for removing a large amount of excess fat. However, as with many plastic surgery procedures, there is generally significant recovery time associated with the procedure and greater risks of side effects. For patients who are concerned about the appearance of excess fat but are worried about receiving a full operation, there are many non-surgical body contouring options that are extremely effective, including the gold standard – CoolSculpting.
Which treatment is best for belly fat reduction – Liposuction or CoolSculpting?
Both Liposuction and CoolSculpting are defined as fat-removal treatments, meaning that they target areas of fat and reduce the appearance of unwanted fat on the body. However, there is a large difference between the two: liposuction is an invasive procedure administered by a plastic surgeon that requires extensive recovery time, whereas CoolSculpting is a non-invasive procedure that can be performed during your lunch break, and has no downtime. As CoolSculpting procedures are incredibly low-risk in comparison to liposuction, CoolSculpting has become a leading nonsurgical fat treatment in the cosmetic procedure world.
Additionally, liposuction is designed to remove more fat during a single session, but unfortunately the procedure can have many more side effects. Often, the skin may sag and ripple after liposuction as the fat cells are not destroyed in the same manner as CoolSculpting. Since liposuction involves the sudden removal of fat from a given area, the skin is often left loose after the procedure. CoolSculpting has the benefit of both zero recovery time and less side effects, including the risk of skin laxity, than liposuction for the majority of patients.
Does CoolSculpting tighten loose skin on the stomach?
When considering liposuction or CoolSculpting for the stomach, the decision often comes down a single simple question: does CoolSculpting tighten stomach skin?
One unfortunate side effect of liposuction is that, due to its redistribution of fat within the body, it can lead to skin laxity or loose skin along the treatment area. Unlike invasive plastic surgery like liposuction, CoolSculpting actually eliminates fat cells and allows them to be metabolized naturally in the body, which thus cuts out the risk of loose skin forming in the first place. Since the fat cells are gradually eliminated, metabolically, CoolSculpting does not run the same risk as liposuction in leaving you with loose skin.
Those who are already dealing with excess skin laxity and are self-conscious about loose skin on the stomach may consider other cosmetic procedures, such as a tummy tuck. As CoolSculpting is not designed to tighten skin, patients with a large amount of loose skin may choose this plastic surgery procedure. However, when it comes to reducing the appearance of stubborn fat on the stomach and eliminating fat cells once and for all, CoolSculpting is an extremely effective, noninvasive solution that will provide you with long-lasting results.
Pairing CoolSculpting with other cosmetic treatments
CoolSculpting is very effective in reducing the prevalence of fat cells in a treatment area such as the lower abdomen or the belly. That said, for more dramatic results, Dr. Green may prescribe multiple different treatments in combination. Through combining different modalities of cosmetic treatments, more areas of concerns can be addressed. For example, many patients want the skin on their arms, flanks, buttocks, neck, or abdomen tightened. By utilizing Thermage® in combination with CoolSculpting, the fat cells can be reduced and the skin tightened and improved. CoolSculpting reduces the fat bulges but cannot address existing skin laxity, or loose skin. For that reason, Dr. Green often pairs CoolSculpting with Thermage for skin tightening.
Cellulite is another area which is common on the abdomen or buttocks on many of our patients. By combining CoolSculpting with QWO® injections for cellulite removal, you can treat the banana roll of the buttock and the cellulite depressions in the buttock area with significant improvement. In addition, some buttocks have severe areas of cellulite and may need to be combined with Sculptra buttock injections to replace this lost volume and rejuvenate the area. Velashape III is another extremely popular non-invasive cosmetic procedure which many patients combine with CoolSculpting. The Velashape III system is FDA approved for the reduction in the appearance of cellulite, circumferential thigh and abdominal fat. Through a combination of infrared light, bipolar radiofrequency energy and vacuum, new collagen and elastin are produced, which results in a reduction in skin laxity, and improved skin tone. During your initial consultation, Dr. Green will assess the treatment areas to determine which cosmetic procedure or combination of treatments will give you the best cosmetic results.
Thermage for skin tightening
Many patients want to address both skin care concerns – that of skin laxity and of excess fat. For this reason, Dr. Green frequently pairs CoolSculpting with Thermage. Thermage utilizes radiofrequency (RF) technology to tighten the skin at the treatment area without any recovery time. The procedure is non-invasive, meaning there are no incisions made, and there is no pain or downtime following the treatment. Thermage treatment can be applied on various parts of the body, including the jowls/face, eyes, buttocks, abdomen, thighs, arms, and knees. Thermage, through the innovative CPT technology, heats the skin and boosts the production of collagen, to provide tighter skin and decrease the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
The treatment works through the use of radiofrequency energy. When the applicator is applied to the skin, it releases a wavelength of energy which heats the inner layer of skin without affecting the surrounding tissue. The radiofrequency energy is absorbed by the tissue and converted to heat, which causes controlled damage to the area. When this occurs, the water molecules in the tissue separate from the fibrous protein, which causes the contraction right away. Additionally, as a result of the heating of the tissue, the body’s natural healing process is triggered, which stimulates the production of collagen. Collagen is a naturally occurring protein in the body that gives the skin structure and strongly contributes to firm, youthful looking skin. When collagen production is triggered, newer, firmer skin replaces the loose skin at the treatment area.
Since Thermage triggers the body’s natural healing process, the skin tightening occurs slowly, over three to four months following the treatment. Over that time, the skin at the treatment area will continue to become tighter and smoother. Since Thermage is a non-invasive procedure, there is no recovery time necessary following the treatment and patients can return to their regularly scheduled activities immediately. The new Thermage FLX® has greater skin tightening results with the larger spot size and deeper AccuRep™ technology, the energy is optimized for enhanced results.
Can CoolSculpting get rid of belly fat?
CoolSculpting is a highly effective treatment for reducing the appearance of belly fat by freezing fat cells to “de-bulk” the treatment area. CoolSculpting is best used for patients who are near to their ideal weight, as CoolSculpting is not a weight loss procedure. However, if you are within 30 pounds of your ideal weight, eating healthy, and exercising regularly but still have stubborn fat on your stomach, CoolSculpting may be the right procedure for you. Using Cryolipolysis technology, CoolSculpting freezes the fat cells in a given treatment area, thereby eliminating the appearance of belly fat.
How much belly fat can CoolSculpting remove?
For each CoolSculpting treatment, the bulge of fat in the treatment area can be reduced by up to 25%. A second treatment in the same area can decrease the fat bulge by up to 40%. The full effects of your CoolSculpting treatment become apparent three to four months after the procedure. For some patients, one treatment session is sufficient to eliminate all of the bulge from the treatment area, however, some patients may need to return to Dr. Green’s office for additional treatment sessions in order to see the best results. When you have your consultation appointment with Dr. Green, she will assess the treatment area to determine the treatment schedule that works best to suit your individual needs and aesthetic goals.
Which CoolSculpting applicator is best for stomach?
CoolSculpting has several different applicator devices that are best used for different areas of the body. Dr. Green uses the following CoolSculpting applicators in her office: CoolMini, CoolFit, CoolCurve, CoolSmooth, CoolCare, and CoolAdvantage Plus. With the most up-to-date CoolSculpting technology, Dr. Green can effectively treat any area of the body in which stubborn fat remains. When treating the abdomen, Dr. Green uses the following applicators:
CoolAdvantage® Plus – The go-to applicator to treat large areas of the body, the CoolAdvantage Plus applicator is most commonly used to sculpt the abdominal area. The CoolAdvantage Plus applicator can be used to reduce pockets of fat on any size stomach in as few as one treatment. Each treatment session with the CoolAdvantage Plus takes approximately 45 minutes. If you are looking to treat your “muffin top” on the lower abdomen, Dr. Green will typically recommend the use of the CoolAdvantage Plus.
CoolCore®– The CoolCore applicator is most commonly used to treat the flanks, which are excess fat that is found on your back along your waist, sometimes more commonly known as “love handles.” With CoolCore, fat reduction treatment usually takes approximately 35 minutes per flank. Typically, patients who are treating love handles will also treat their abdomen at the same time. For those who require a “diamond shaped” treatment on the stomach, the CoolCore applicator is well-suited for that treatment as well.
CoolPetite® – CoolPetite is a smaller applicator that is used on smaller areas of the body, such as on the back or for small flanks, abdomen, or banana roll. If you are a patient with a smaller stomach already, Dr. Green may recommend the use of the CoolPetite to address the excess fat on the lower abdomen. With the CoolPetite applicator, treatment typically takes 35 minutes.
CoolSmooth – The CoolSmooth is a unique non-vacuum comfortable surface applicator, which is particularly well suited for the areas of fibrous subcutaneous fat, such as the periumbilical abdomen, back, and other thighs, which cannot be pulled into one of the cryolipolysis applicators. A recent study published in 2019 by the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery illustrated 100% patient satisfaction after two treatments.
Are there any side effects from CoolSculpting?
Typically, the side effects post-CoolSculpting are incredibly mild, and involve mild swelling or bruising of the treated area for a few days post-treatment. In very rare cases, CoolSculpting can cause symptoms of acute pain, but this can be treated with an oral medication such as Neurontin to alleviate any pain. In less than 1% of cases, patients may experience paradoxical adipose hyperplasia, where fat cells will clump together after the procedure rather than metabolizing.
As CoolSculpting is a medical cosmetic procedure, it’s incredibly important that you consider where and with whom you undergo CoolSculpting treatment. Many medical spas or “med spas” will offer initial consultations that don’t involve medical professionals and, in some cases, CoolSculpting procedures will be done by professionals without any official training or certification in CoolSculpting. For these reasons, we recommend CoolSculpting treatment only with an experience board-certified dermatologist, such as Dr. Michele Green in New York City, who has been treating thousands of patients with CoolSculpting for over 10 years.
Male Patient – CoolSculpting with CoolAdvantage & CoolCurve
How long is the stomach swollen after CoolSculpting?
CoolSculpting is a non-invasive treatment and for that reason, the risk of developing any serious side effects is very low. There are some common, mild side effects that can occur following the treatment. One such minor side effect of CoolSculpting that happens in some cases is temporary swelling at the treatment site. The swelling is typically mild and will go away on its own after several days following the procedure.
Does CoolSculpting hurt?
No! CoolSculpting is not a painful procedure. CoolSculpting is a non-invasive procedure meaning that does not require any down time. For your CoolSculpting treatment, an applicator is applied to the skin, which freezes the fat cells found in the subcutaneous region of the skin. As such, you will feel a “freezing” sensation on the surface of the skin, which makes the skin go “numb”. For the remainder of the procedure, there is no discomfort at all at the treatment area. Following the treatment, there may be some minor discomfort as the skin returns to room temperature and there is a small risk of bruising or swelling following the treatment.
Am I a good candidate for CoolSculpting?
The best way to assess if you are a good candidate for CoolSculpting is to have a consultation with an expert, like Dr. Michele Green in New York. CoolSculpting is an excellent fat reduction treatment for many patients who are at or near their ideal weight and have a stubborn fat bulge that won’t go away despite diet and exercise. Patients who are pregnant or nursing should refrain from having CoolSculpting until you are no longer pregnant and are finished nursing.
Additionally, CoolSculpting is contraindicated if you have any of the following medical conditions:
- Cold Agglutinin Disease: an immune disease that attacks red blood cells that is triggered by cold or frozen temperatures
- Cryoglobulinemia: a presence of abnormal protein in one’s blood stream that thickens when in colder temperatures
- Paroxysmal cold hemoglobinuria: an autoimmune anemia that can sensitize red blood cells after exposure to cold
CoolSculpting Cost: how much is CoolSculpting for the stomach?
The cost for CoolSculpting is dependent on a variety of factors. The use of multiple CoolSculpting applicators, need for multiple CoolSculpting procedures, and desired results will all combine to determine the cost of your CoolSculpting skincare plan. Additionally, the cost of treatment will likely be higher if your treatment plan involves multiple different procedures to achieve your desired results, such as combining CoolSculpting with Thermage for skin tightening. However, as CoolSculpting is a noninvasive procedure, it’s typically more affordable than plastic surgery fat removal alternatives. When it comes to your CoolSculpting treatment plan, Dr. Green will work with you to determine the right plan for your desired results and budget.
Can I get CoolSculpting on the stomach while pregnant?
No! Pregnancy causes many changes to the body and you may notice a buildup of excess fat during or after your pregnancy. For that reason, some pregnant women look to CoolSculpting with the hope of returning to a pre-pregnancy body contour. Patients who are pregnant should avoid receiving CoolSculpting during pregnancy. However, approximately three months following the birth of your child, you may be eligible to start CoolSculpting treatment. At that time, you can book a consultation appointment with Dr. Green to discuss your body contouring options.
Is CoolSculpting worth it? How effective is CoolSculpting on the stomach?
Yes! CoolSculpting is an incredibly effective and safe fat removal cosmetic procedure. If you are experiencing stubborn fat and want the benefit of permanent fat reduction, then CoolSculpting may be the perfect solution for you. The stomach is the most popular area for CoolSculpting treatment with CoolSculpting recognized as the gold standard for non-invasive body contouring. Whether it be stubborn fat in the belly, love handles, buttocks (banana rolls), or thighs, CoolSculpting treats these targeted areas with no downtime.
Kybella for belly fat removal
Kybella® is an FDA approved dermal injection of deoxycholic acid, a naturally occurring molecule that dissolves fat. Kybella injections are sometimes considered as an alternative to CoolSculpting. In fact, Kybella can be combined with CoolSculpting treatment to create a comprehensive fat reduction procedure, particularly in areas with pockets of fat too small for a CoolSculpting applicator. Kybella is especially useful for small areas of fat such as in the bra area, buttocks, or knees. During your consultation, Dr. Green will help determine if Kybella injections are the best cosmetic treatment for you.
Did CoolSculpting work for you?
Many patients want to hear that CoolSculpting worked for others before committing to the treatment. And for many of Dr. Green’s patients, the answer to the question, did CoolSculpting work for you, is a resounding yes! Patients are very satisfied with the results of the treatment, which is safe and effective at reducing the concentration of fat cells in the stomach for a slimmer, more contoured look.
Where can I get CoolSculpting for fat removal?
If you are struggling with stubborn fat on your stomach, or other areas of the body, CoolSculpting treatment is a safe and effective method to permanently reduce unwanted fat bulges. Dr. Michele Green has been at the forefront of CoolSculpting for over 10 years and was one of the first dermatologists in New York City to bring CoolSculpting to her NYC patients. Dr. Green is recognized consistently as one of the best dermatologists in New York by Castle Connolly, the New York Times, Super Doctors, and New York Magazine. Please contact us online or call the NYC office of Dr. Michele Green today at 212-535-3088 to create a customized treatment plan and feel fully confident in your own skin.