CoolSculpting® FAQ

People come to see us in La Jolla from all over San Diego County for CoolSculpting because few practices have the level of training, experience, and equipment you'll find here. Dr. Chaffoo and Robert have answered just about every question imaginable when it comes to this remarkable treatment. Here are answers to some of the most common we hear from our CoolSculpting patients.

For additional questions you'd like answered in person, please request a consultation online, or give us a call at (858) 997-0096 and we will be happy to schedule an appointment for you.

HOW DOES COOLSCULPTING WORK?

The process CoolSculpting uses is called Cryolipolysis®, and it was developed by Harvard-based researchers. They discovered that fat cells are more vulnerable to cold than other tissues. When fat cells absorb cold energy, they are damaged while nearby tissues remain unharmed. Eventually the damaged fat cells are flushed out of the body. CoolSculpting treatments capitalize on this principle and deliver cold energy in a precise, targeted way that destroys fat without damage to skin or other tissue.1

WHAT AREAS CAN BE TREATED WITH COOLSCULPTING?

Stubborn fat can be genetic — and that means it shows up in different areas for different people. CoolSculpting is versatile enough to address many of these areas:

  • Abdomen
  • Flanks (love handles)
  • Back
  • Bra fat
  • Armpits (front and back)
  • Inner arms
  • Inner & outer thighs
  • Chin
  • Buttock (banana roll)
  • Chest (gynecomastia)
  • Lateral chest wall
  • Knees
  • Pelvis

That said, if you have multiple areas of concern, we will speak to you during your consultation about how best to structure a treatment plan, as we may need multiple treatment sessions to get your desired results. We will also discuss whether or not liposuction is a better choice for your goals.

WHAT DOES A TREATMENT REALLY FEEL LIKE?

Most of my patients describe the treatment as being surprisingly comfortable. At the beginning, there is a feeling of intense cold and sometimes a prickly sensation, much like using an icepack. Soon, though, the skin goes numb, and the rest of the treatment is very comfortable. Afterward, you might experience some discomfort, but most people find the recovery very tolerable.

HOW DO TREATMENTS DIFFER BY THE AREA OF THE BODY?

In essence, every treatment follows the same pattern, regardless of where on your body the CoolSculpting device will be delivering treatment. The main difference is in the applicator we use, as each one is shaped for the unique contours and characteristics of a specific region. We perform treatments using all of these applicators:

  • CoolAdvantage
  • CoolMini
  • CoolSmoothPro
  • CoolMax
  • CoolCore
  • CoolFit
  • CoolCurve
  • CoolCurve+

Each applicator has a specific advantage. Some applicators are best for covering larger areas or cutting the treatment time from an hour to just 35 minutes; others are best for regions of "non-pinchable" fat. Rest assured that we choose the right applicator for your particular aesthetic goals based on what will cover the treatment area and provide an efficient treatment.

HOW MUCH DOES COOLSCULPTING COST?

At our San Diego County practice, we price CoolSculpting by the area. The lower abdomen is considered a large area, and when treated on its own, costs $1,500. Small areas such as the hips, back, and inner thighs each cost $750 when treated alone. Treatment of the chin alone costs $1,000. Prices are usually lower when multiple areas are treated in one session.

With all of the possible combinations, we are unable to state specific treatment costs on our website. The best way to get a specific price is to come in for a complimentary consultation with our Certified CoolSculpting Specialist. He will design a CoolSculpting treatment plan that addresses your individual goals and financial situation.

HOW LONG IS A TREATMENT SESSION?

A treatment session typically lasts about an hour per treatment area. We do have two CoolSculpting machines set up for people who wish to have two areas treated simultaneously (e.g., both inner thighs), cutting the overall treatment time in half versus practices that are limited to a single machine. It also helps ensure a more symmetrical result. This is commonly referred to as "DualSculpting."

DOES COOLSCULPTING HELP WITH CELLULITE?

CoolSculpting is indicated for localized fat reduction, not necessarily for the improvement of cellulite. For individuals who are interested in reducing the lumpy, dimpled texture caused by cellulite, we offer Cellulaze™.

CAN I GET MULTIPLE TREATMENTS?

Yes, many of our patients book a few treatments to target multiple areas. You can also treat the same area more than once if you'd like to reduce fat even more.

WHAT DOES BEING A "CERTIFIED COOLSCULPTING PRACTICE" MEAN?

Safety is paramount in every treatment we offer, so we take the standards set forth by ZELTIQ® — the manufacturer of CoolSculpting — very seriously. We have been named a Certified CoolSculpting Practice, which signifies that our treatment provider has completed the training program offered by ZELTIQ and are well-versed in how to perform an excellent treatment.

Beyond that, ZELTIQ also awards different statuses to top performing practices who have successfully completed a large number of treatments, as a symbol of consistency and great results. La Jolla Skin is proud to be a Premier Crystal CoolSculpting practice.

HOW EXPERIENCED IS YOUR COOLSCULPTING PROVIDER?

Robert Gleason is a Certified CoolSculpting Specialist who has been performing the treatment since 2011. In that time, he has performed 10,000+ treatments on more than 2,000 patients.

HOW MANY POUNDS CAN I DROP USING COOLSCULPTING?

Although CoolSculpting does help patients shed fat, most don't see a big difference on the scale. Good candidates are already close to their ideal weight and lead healthy lifestyles. CoolSculpting is meant to refine your body by helping you target areas that have proven too stubborn to tone with diet and exercise alone. We encourage our patients to think of results not in terms of pounds, but of inches.

ARE THERE SIDE EFFECTS FROM COOLSCULPTING?

During the procedure, patients may initially experience discomfort until the treatment area becomes numb. After treatment, temporary side effects may include mild redness, bruising, swelling, tenderness to the touch, cramping, itching, and tingling. Patients may experience numbness of treated areas that persists up to several weeks after treatment.


1 Zelickson B., Egbert B.M., Preciado J., Allison J., Springer K., Manstein D., Cryolipolysis for Noninvasive Fat Cell Destruction: Initial Results from a Pig Model, Dermatologic Surgery: 2009; 35(10):1462-1470. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19614940