Nonsurgical procedures like CoolSculpting® have become more common in recent years. It is easy to understand why so many patients would want to turn to a nonsurgical procedure: there are no anesthesia-related risks, there is a shorter recovery period, and there is no chance of postoperative scarring. CoolSculpting® is advertised as a nonsurgical alternative to liposuction, which for decades has been the gold standard of cosmetic fat reduction. But while CoolSculpting® advertisers want you to believe that either procedure can attain the same results, this is not the case. While CoolSculpting® does provide benefits that liposuction does not, the two procedures are not interchangeable. Ideal results from nonsurgical body contouring procedures only happen when they are performed on the right candidate, and the right candidate is not always easy to come by.

Torso with Contour LinesWhen Is CoolSculpting® Appropriate?

CoolSculpting® uses freezing temperatures to damage fat cells in the abdomen and other parts of the body. As the applicator is placed over the treatment area, bursts of cold temperatures are administered that damage fat cells while leaving healthy cells untouched. From here, it is up to your body to eliminate the damaged cells. Some patients can undergo the procedure and get good results, but only if they are truly a good candidate. The right candidate for CoolSculpting® should be well within 25 to 30 pounds of their ideal weight with smaller localized pockets of fat and excellent skin elasticity. CoolSculpting® cannot remove the same amount of fat as a surgical procedure and cannot tighten loose skin.

Stick to the Basics

Liposuction is known worldwide for its ability to remove fat. However, while it is still considered surgery, the incisions made are small and often do not even require stitches. During liposuction, a hollow tube (cannula) is inserted into an incision, and unwanted fat cells are suctioned out with the help of a vacuuming device. The procedure is ideal for patients who have localized fat deposits that they would like to eliminate from almost anywhere on their body. And much like the development of nonsurgical procedures, liposuction itself has seen a wide variety of new techniques and upgrades over the years. Liposculpting can involve a variety of liposuction techniques that allow for targeted, precise, and predictable fat removal and body shaping.

How Do Different Techniques Ensure Quality Results?

Liposculpting takes liposuction up a notch. While liposuction is a good option for the removal of broader areas of fat, liposculpting removes fat more precisely to better define musculature and curves. Several techniques can be used, such as power-assisted liposuction to break up fat cells for easier removal and SmartLipo™, which uses laser technology to melt fat and tighten skin. These techniques can trim, smooth, and enhance your body contours, providing your ideal results.


While all surgical procedures work best when the patient is near their goal weight, liposculpture allows for a more significant amount of wiggle room than nonsurgical techniques. This is because it reaches a more comprehensive depth. If you are considering a cosmetic procedure, it is because there are results that you want to see but cannot achieve on your own. Liposuction can get you where you want to be; CoolSculpting® is, unfortunately, a toss-up. You should never let the newest fad in body contouring sway you from the surgical techniques that are time-tested and reliable.


If you are interested in learning more about liposculpture, contact Dr. Bridges at Bridges to Beauty by calling (888) 305-6693 or by filling out our online contact form.

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