Liposuction vs. CoolSculpting

Stubborn, exercise-resistant fat deposits can be an eyesore and stand in the way of you feeling and looking your best. If you, like millions of people across the country, are looking for a long-term body sculpting solution, you’ve likely considered both liposuction and CoolSculpting. But, with all the confusing marketing surrounding these treatments, it can be hard to determine which treatment is the right one for you.

Liposuction vs. Coolsculpting is one of the most common questions brought to our practice and the information below will help you decide which treatment will achieve the results you are looking for.

Which treatment is right for me?

Liposuction, or lipo surgery, is a minimally-invasive surgical treatment that removes fat cells with different forms of technology and commonly a suction device. Liposuction has been the gold-standard for reducing fat from the body permanently. Modern-day techniques have provided consistently satisfying results for patients with all manners of body goals.

Coolsculpting is a marketed as the latest non-invasive body sculpting technology that uses freezing temperatures to target particular areas. After a few sessions, you are supposed to begin to see your problem areas shrink. The technology used is called cryolipolysis and successfully freezes fat away without damaging surrounding tissues.

Liposuction is more invasive than CoolSculpting but often only needs to be performed once to provide amazing results!

At a glance, there are a few main differences between Liposuction and Coolsculpting.
Liposuction provides:

  • Impressive results after one treatment
  • Minimally-invasive technique
  • Little downtime after treatment
  • Precise, predictable results
  • Long-lasting results

Each procedure offers many benefits. Coolsculpting provides:

  • A non-surgical procedure
  • No downtime
  • Convenience

Both treatments can provide excellent benefits depending on a person’s lifestyle and desired outcome.

Liposuction, Vaser Liposuction

Liposuction is a preferable treatment compared to new technologies like CoolSculpting because liposuction is effective, versatile and proven itself over the years. Additionally, there are many forms of liposuction available today that have evolved from the original 1970s liposuction technology offering patients a variety of options for every type of body goal.

At Norcal Liposculpture, our more popular technique is called Vaser liposuction. VASER stands for Vibration Amplification of Sound Energy and Resonance and uses ultrasound waves to emulsify fat.

Vaser lipo is revolutionary because it allows for maximum removal of fat while maintaining the health of surrounding tissues. Vaser also helps to tighten the skin, providing you with smooth, slim results.

Vaser liposuction can treat many areas, such as the ankles, arms, axilla, buttocks, thighs, breast, calves, neck, flanks, and waist. Some of the more popular areas include:

Neck Liposuction

Removing fat from your neck will help improve your neckline and Vaser technology will help tighten the skin.

Stomach Liposuction

Fat commonly gathers around the abdomen, causing irregular profiles. Abdominal liposuction can help remove subcutaneous layers of fat and help promote a trim appearance. It is important to note that liposuction cannot improve the appearance of a protruding stomach, often referred to as “beer gut”. Beer guts are caused by visceral fat.

Visceral fat develops deep within the body and forms around the internal organs. This fat cannot be reduced with surgical intervention because it is too hard and is in a sensitive area. However, the fat that appears near the surface of your body is called subcutaneous and can be simply removed with liposuction.

Chin Liposuction

Many people are bothered by excess fat under their chin. A double chin may make you appear more overweight or older than you truly are. Liposuction can quickly reduce bothersome fat stores and help you regain a defined jawline.

Liposuction for Men

Liposuction techniques can greatly improve the male physique!

This treatment is incredibly helpful for men who have gynecomastia. Gynecomastia is a condition where men develop excess breast tissue usually due to hormonal imbalances. This imbalance causes breast tissue to grow and maybe an uncomfortable and sensitive condition for men. Liposuction can reduce the tissue and help re-sculpt the male chest. Liposuction can also help men achieve a six pack or the defined arms they always wanted.

Vaser Liposuction

Vaser lipo is performed under local anesthesia. Minuscule incisions will be administered to your predetermined area and will allow Dr. Friedlander to remove fat with precision. A small cannula will administer tumescent fluid to the treatment area. Tumescent fluid is composed of saline, lidocaine (anesthesia), and epinephrine (adrenaline). This formula will provide many benefits that will work to provide a positive procedure and recovery. Tumescent fluid will act as local anesthesia, allowing you to stay awake during the procedure. The fluid will firm and swell the area, which works to constrict blood vessels and reduce bleeding. You will experience less bruising and swelling than in other forms of liposuction and, therefore, a shorter recovery period.

Once the tumescent fluid is applied, the Vaser probe is inserted and emits ultrasound waves. The sound waves agitate the bubbles, causing them to fluctuate and gently dislodge fat cells. The cells will then be delicately suctioned from the area.

This technique allows for more precise, sculpted results. Vaser liposuction stands out from other lipo techniques because it removes shallow and deeper layers of subcutaneous fat. The result will be tighter, slimmer contours.

When you leave your liposuction appointment, your treated area will be bandaged and swollen. You will need to wear a compression garment to control swelling and ensure your body adjusts to its new contours. Many patients take up to three days off of work to rest and ease through their initial recovery.

A follow-up appointment will be scheduled to monitor your health and well as inform you of when to return to common activities such as exercising, swimming or lifting.

Liposuction Results

You will immediately notice some of your liposuction results. As the swelling decreases, your final results will begin to take shape and you will notice improvements in your natural contours and skin texture. It will take a couple weeks to be fully healed but the results will be significant and long-lasting. With a healthy lifestyle, you can keep your results consistent.


CoolSculpting’s fat freezing technology has grown rapidly in recent years, marketed as a non-surgical fat reduction alternative to treatments like liposuction. Coolsculpting’s main perks are that it may be performed at any time, without much preparation and results in very little or no downtime at all. CoolSculpting treatments last thirty-five to sixty minutes, during which you can relax, watch TV, read or take a nap, all while getting rid of fat!

CoolSculpting may be preferable for its convenience, but the treatment has shown limitations with the type of result it can provide.

CoolSculpting can be performed with many different applicators depending on the area of the body targeted. The applicators differ in size and shape and can be applied to the abdomen, back, thighs, arms, a man’s chest, under the buttocks, love handles and under the chin to reduce a double chin. Two areas can be treated at once but may elongate your appointment time.

A CoolSculpting procedure requires one of the applicators to be suctioned to the skin for close contact. The suctioning action will bring the fat layer towards the surface of your body for maximum exposure to the applicator. The fat is easier to treat when separated and will allow no trauma to surrounding tissues. The applicator will emit cold temperatures in the targeted area while keeping the surrounding tissue safe and comfortable. No surgical techniques, anesthesia or invasive methods are used during the process. As soon as the appointment is over, you are able to return to your normal routine.

The results of a single CoolSculpting treatment are typically not visible and most patients tend to require multiple sessions. With the mechanism of CoolSculpting technology, you will have to wait for your body to naturally remove broken-down fat cells, which can take a few weeks or months.

Dr. Friedlander, Sacramento’s Body Sculpting Expert

The best way to truly know which option is right for you is through an in-person consultation. Although both liposuction and CoolSculpting can be good options for losing unnecessary, stubborn fat, a detailed physical assessment will give you a clear answer on how to best achieve your goals.

Be sure to ask about liposuction and CoolSculpting before and after photos to see how each of these procedures may sculpt your body. CoolSculpting is convenient and Liposuction gives you profound, immediate results that last.

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