CoolSculpting® Can Melt Away Fat in Many Areas, Plastic Surgeon Says
Dr. Kent V. Hasen, of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery of Naples, says the non-invasive fat-freezing device has been cleared by the FDA for treatment of the flanks and abdomen, but it can also be highly effective on the back, thighs, and elsewhere.
Naples, Florida (November 2013) — CoolSculpting has seen a major boom in popularity over the past few years since the FDA cleared it for non-surgical fat reduction around the midsection. Additionally, according to Dr. Kent V. Hasen (www.drhasen.com), the device's versatility in treating other areas has been a significant factor in its popularity as a plastic surgery alternative. At his Naples, Florida practice, Dr. Hasen uses CoolSculpting for several different treatment areas.
CoolSculpting was cleared by the FDA in September 2010 to reduce fat on the flanks, commonly known as the "love handles." In May 2010, the device got further clearance for treatment of the abdomen. "Patients have asked me what this FDA clearance means," Dr. Hasen says. "Being cleared for use in specific areas does not mean it's prohibited for use in others. Doctors use devices and treatments all the time for indications outside of the FDA clearance."
Indeed, "off-label use" is quite common for a wide variety of devices and even drugs, so much so that the FDA has published an information sheet on the practice. This document states that "If physicians use a product for an indication not in the approved labeling, they have the responsibility to be well informed about the product, to base its use on firm scientific rationale and on sound medical evidence, and to maintain records of the product's use and effects."
When it comes to CoolSculpting, the Naples physician says this means that thoroughly trained and experienced practitioners can use the device safely on several areas, including the inner and outer thighs, bra area of the upper back, and even the upper arms.
The device works by applying intense cold to areas of the body where patients want to target stubborn fat. Skin and fat are suctioned between 2 cooling panels, and the low temperatures cause fat cells to die while leaving surrounding tissue undamaged. The dead fat cells are eliminated naturally by the body over the course of a few months, resulting in a 20% to 25% fat reduction in the area.
"We can basically treat any area that works with the way the system is designed and shaped," Dr. Hasen says, noting that in the future, it's likely that ZELTIQ®, the company behind CoolSculpting, will make cooling plates that fit other areas of the body.
In the meantime, Dr. Hasen recommends patients receive CoolSculpting treatments only from the practices of board-certified plastic surgeons or other similarly qualified medical professionals. His practice is a "CoolSculpting Center of Excellence" and a "Preferred Crystal Practice," a special designation among CoolSculpting centers.
"Doctors who have experience performing body contouring procedures have a strong foundational knowledge of these areas," he says. "That's why they can safely use CoolSculpting in off-label ways. Patients should check their doctors' credentials to make sure their treatments are safe and their results are good."
Dr. Hasen says qualified plastic surgeons can also help patients tell whether CoolSculpting will work to meet their goals or whether they would better benefit from liposuction, which he uses in Naples for those who need more extensive fat reduction than the non-surgical route can provide.
"These can both be great options for the right patient," Dr. Hasen says, "and a plastic surgeon can help you decide what's best for you."
To meet with Dr. Hasen to explore your options for CoolSculpting or body contouring surgery at his practice in Naples, Florida, request a consultation online or call (239) 262-5662 today.