Whenever you see an advertisement for a medical treatment or new medication on TV or in a magazine, a long list of side effects is usually listed. In some cases, the list of side effects can seem minor. In others, they can be serious or even alarming.
Side effects are pretty much unavoidable with any treatment or medicine. That’s because although human bodies have a lot of similarities, they are also considerably different from one another. One person’s system might react completely differently to medical intervention than someone else’s. If just one person has a wild side effect during a clinical trial, it gets included in the list of possible risks, even if the chance of it happening to someone else is very low.
Being an informed and educated health consumer means understanding what the potential side effects are from any treatment you’re considering. It also means understanding how high the risk of side effects is and what you can do to minimize your risk.
Coolsculpting, like any other procedure, does have a few associated side effects. While the risk of side effects shouldn’t deter you from having Coolsculpting if you’re otherwise a good candidate, knowing what could happen can help you better prepare for the procedure.
Minor Side Effects During and After Coolsculpting
Minor side effects can occur during a Coolsculpting session or they can develop after the treatment is complete. One common side effect that can happen during the procedure is a tugging or pulling sensation in the treatment area.
The Coolsculpting process involves placing an area of fat into the applicator of the Coolsculpting machine. Since the applicator uses suction to hold the fat in place, some people feel as if the treatment area is being pulled into the device. Usually, the feeling of tugging or pulling isn’t severe enough for a person to want to stop the treatment, but some people are sensitive to the sensation.
Another side effect that can occur during Coolsculpting is feeling extreme cold, stinging, or aching in the area that’s being treated. The sensation is usually due to the cooling properties of the device’s applicator. Once the treatment area gets numb from the cold, many people no longer feel discomfort or aching.
Right after treatment, some people have mild side effects, such as whitening of the skin in the treated area. The skin might also be red or feel firm or hard to the touch. As the area warms up and sensation returns, some people notice a stinging feeling. Usually, these side effects after treatment go away on their own very quickly.
It’s also possible for people to have side effects that develop within a week or two after treatment. Aching or cramping can occur in the area, as can redness or bruising. Some people notice swelling in the area in the weeks after Coolsculpting.
In some cases, patients experience lasting numbness or tingling after their Coolsculpting treatment. If numbness does develop, it usually wears off after a few weeks.
More Serious Side Effects After Coolsculpting
Weirdly enough, some people might experience the opposite of the results they were hoping for from Coolsculpting. In some rare cases, a phenomenon known as paradoxical hyperplasia can occur. Paradoxical hyperplasia causes an area of fat to develop or become bigger after the area is exposed to cold.
Although hyperplasia isn’t dangerous, it is disheartening. When your goal is to get rid of fat, making more of it definitely isn’t what you want. Fortunately, this side effect is rare, occurring in about 1 out of every 4,000 cases. It’s also possible to reverse it, by surgically removing the unwanted fat.
How Concerned Should You Be About Side Effects?
Side effects are a part of life and a part of any type of treatment, whether for medical or cosmetic purposes. Generally speaking, the relatively small risk of side effects shouldn’t deter you from having Coolsculpting if you think you would benefit from the procedure and you’ve spoken to a medical professional who thinks the same.
One thing worth noting is that the Coolsculpting treatment isn’t the right call for everyone. If you have skin that’s very sensitive to cold, if you have chronic pain or nerve problems, or if your physician has recommended that you avoid the treatment for any reason whatsoever, your best bet is to find a different way to get rid of unwanted excess fat.
People who are good candidates for Coolsculpting usually shouldn’t have to worry about side effects. Some tingling, redness or bruising might be a nuisance, but these symptoms will wear off soon and enough and you’ll be able to go back to your regular life.
Interested in learning more about Coolsculpting and finding out if you’re a good candidate for the treatment? Call Mirror Mirror Beauty Boutique at (281) 810-9083 to schedule a complimentary consultation at our Houston, TX med spa.