CRYOLIPOLYSIS – a breakthrough in non-invasive fat removal

Cryolipolysis is a non-invasive procedure that involves freezing the fat cells to trigger the process of lipolysis (the breakdown of fat) without damage to other tissue types .

The device made by Zeltiq uses a plate-like non-invasive applicator that is placed directly on the treatment area and cooled to near-freezing temperatures resulting in the breakdown of body fat. The fat cells begin a process of natural cell death and removal. The irreversibly damaged fat cells in the treated area are gradually eliminated through the body’s normal metabolism process.  The result is a flattening of fat bulges that is visible in patients over three to four months.

Cryolipolysis penetrates deepest in thick fat areas, tapering to less effect in leaner areas allowing for natural body sculpting.

Cryolipolysis was Invented by world-renowned scientists from Harvard Medical School and the Wellman Center for Photomedicine at Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts. It is a breakthrough technology that is based on the natural biologic vulnerability of fat cells to the effects of cold via controlled energy extraction.

It appears to be  the next generation of fat reduction procedures reducing the need to pursue extensive liposuction or laser assisted lipolysis (SmartLipo, SlimLipo etc.)

Findings from the first multi-center study of non-invasive cryolipolysis in humans were presented at the 29th Annual Conference of the American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery (ASLMS) in National Harbor, Maryland.

The data have confirmed that cryolipolysis treatment is safe and provides a significant benefit of fat volume reductions when performed in a routine clinical setting.  The prospective clinical study also corroborated earlier animal research showing that precisely controlled cooling via a hand-held applicator attached to a sophisticated medical device causes a gradual reduction of targeted fat cells through a naturally induced cell death without harming surrounding tissues. This mechanism of action is fundamentally different from ultrasound or heat-based approaches that create acute injury and eliminate fat cells through traumatic cell death.

This is the first controlled study to demonstrate that cryolipolysis for fat layer reduction in men and women is well-tolerated procedure and produces a visible contour change in all 100% subjects. Unlike traditional surgical procedures to remove fat, cryolipolysis is performed without needles, incisions, anesthesia or pain medication, plus there is no recovery time.

Clinical Study:

Thirty-two male and female subjects age 18 and older with clearly visible fat on the flank (love handle) or back considered appropriate for treatment with cryolipolysis participated in a multi-center, prospective, non-randomized study.

Based on results from these evaluations, researchers confirmed that cryolipolysis resulted in a visible contour change and, specifically, the ultrasound measurements demonstrated a fat layer reduction in 100 percent of subjects with an average reduction of 22.4 percent at four months after treatment.  The subjects with modest fat bulges had the best cosmetic results from the procedure, and no device-related adverse events were reported by any of the subjects.

The study showed that cryolipolysis produces gradual reductions in fat layer after only one treatment while avoiding damage to the surrounding tissues.


Several days after the procedure, the cooled fat cells begin a process called “apoptosis” and begin to shrink. These damaged fat cells are slowly digested over several months by our bodies and removed through the liver. The procedure is highly effective and is producing consistent results for local areas of fat like the love-handles, back and belly. The larger areas of fat may require more invasive treatments.

The best candidate for cryolipolysis is someone who is in relatively good shape, but has modest areas of fat bulges that they’d like removed. It’s not an alternative to healthy diet or lifestyle.

Possible Side Effects:

Side effects are usually mild and related to the cold of the device which subside within 10 minutes. Skin may be red for several minutes to several hours. Other side effects may include temporary bruising, tingling, tenderness, temporary dulling of sensation or cramping.

In summary, the cryolipolysis seems to be almost perfect and truly non-invasive procedure for consistent fat removal without any downtime or significant side effects.

There are several features that are very attractive yet for me the most important are the reliability of 100% effectiveness and the top scientific name standing behind the product.

Cryolipolysis was approved for use in the European Community and Canada; it is expected to receive FDA approval very soon. As soon as the device is available it will be our priority to provide this treatment modality to our patients.

Stay tuned for the updates….


0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *