Coolsculpting vs liposuction: What’s the difference

The two medical practices, CoolSculpting vs liposuction, are procedures that both focus on reducing fat from the body. But, obviously, due to the differences in their procedures, we have two terms, CoolSculpting and liposuction.

So let’s understand what exactly they are.

Coolsculpting vs Liposuction 

Liposuction Procedure

 Talking about Liposuction, it’s the opposite of CoolSculpting, involving surgical processes such as cutting and stitching. The medical surgeons might use lidocaine(one of the local anesthesia), or you could be treated with general anesthesia. 

The medical practitioner or the surgeon will make a short incision. He will vacuum out the fat from that area of your body through a cannula (a long, very narrow tool used for suction).

Coolsculpting Procedure

Coolsculpting, also known as cryolipolysis, is a medical practice that doesn’t involve any cutting or putting instruments inside the body. It is helpful in getting rid of excess fat cells from your skin layers without any surgery risks.

While going through CoolSculpting procedure, the surgeon or the physician having CoolSculpting experience will strike off and freeze the fat rolls with a special tool.

In the subsequent weeks of your treatment, the liver will naturally eliminate the frozen dead fat cells. You will see the results during that time and the concluding results in some months. 

Again, as said before, CoolSculpting is not a surgical procedure; so you would not have to go through any kind of cutting, stitching processes. 

Coolsculpting vs liposuction

How long does CoolSculpting take?

Since there are no surgeries involved in the process, so there is not much need for recovery time for the same. The process involves you going through the process for several weeks to be in the best shape. You will be able to recognize the changes even after your first session. 

Each Coolsculpting session lasts for about an hour. On average, people start to see the complete results after three months of them having their last session.

How long does Liposuction take?

Again, Liposuction is an altogether different concept from Coolsculpting. You don’t need to go for multiple sessions for this; most people were able to see results from only one liposuction session. The  Liposuction surgery takes generally one to two hours according to the body part being treated. It doesn’t actually need you to stay in the hospital, unlike other surgeries. You can go home once you are done with your surgery.

It takes a few days for you to be able to recover properly after the surgery. Make sure you follow the recommendations and tips given by your doctor. They may ask you to limit some of the physical activities and can also provide you with some special kind of bandage.

It can take several months for the swelling to go off properly after surgery. You might need to avoid any strength-involving activity for some weeks to avoid any injury.

Which gives better results: Coolsculpting Vs Liposuction

Both the processes leave you with very similar results where both reduce excess fat permanently. This excessive fat can be from your specific body parts such as arms, chin, belly, and thighs.

One very important thing to keep in notice that both procedures reduce fat, weight loss is not the purpose. A study from 2012 shows that the participants had the same amount of body fat one year after treatment as they had earlier. In the end, both the procedures are effective in removing fat but can’t improvise upon the appearance of loose skin or cellulite.


According to studies, CoolSculpting sessions can help you get rid of 25% of fat in any area of a person’s body.


Swelling is a very common consequence in the people who go for liposuction. It generally takes between one to three months after your surgery, for you to notice the complete and effective results. 

So, the question is what to go for?

Finally, Which is better: Coolsculpting or Liposuction?

Coolsculpting vs liposuction

Who can go for CoolSculpting?

While CoolSculpting is very safe for almost everyone without any side effects, the one with blood disorders should avoid it. In people with disorders like cold agglutinin disease, paroxysmal cold hemoglobulinuria, or cryoglobulinemia, some serious complications could be triggered by Coolsculpting.

Who can go for Liposuction?

Anyone, male or female, can go for liposuction who want to improve their looks. People with heart issues or diseases related to blood and pregnant women should stay away because it can cause critical problems. 

Which one is more cost-efficient?

One thing to note, both the processes, CoolSculpting vs liposuction are cosmetic procedures. Might be bad for your pocket cause your insurance plan won’t be able to help here.

Cost of CoolSculpting

Coolsculpting usually ranges between $2,000 and $4,000 depending upon the type and number of body parts you want to get treated.

Cost of Liposuction

Liposuction can get expensive as it involves surgery and some delicate steps involving anesthesia, cutting, and many more. Likewise, it’s cost also depends upon the body part or parts you decide to treat. In 2018, the average cost for liposuction surgery was $3,500.

Do they have any side effects?

CoolSculpting Side Effects

Since it doesn’t involve any surgeries, you are free from any serious risks of surgery. But there are some side effects to it.

Common side effects of CoolSculpting:

  • Temporary bruises, swelling, redness
  • Some tugging sensations at the treated area.
  • Aching, stinging, or pain 

Paradoxical adipose hyperplasia is one of the rarest side effects that someone might get. In this condition, the fat cells meant to get eliminated actually swell up and expand. This is a much more common sight in men than women.

Liposuction side effects

Liposuction is a riskier option than CoolSculpting as it includes surgery, cutting, and stitching processes. 

Common side effects of Liposuction: 

  • Temporary or permanent numbness
  • Irregularities such as lumps or divots in skin shape
  • Skin infection
  • Unwanted accumulation of bad fluid
  • Internal puncture wounds
  • Skin discoloration 

Some of the serious side effects of liposuction:

  • Change in body fluid levels can trigger kidney or heart problems
  • Fat metabolism which leads to a release of fat clot directly into your lungs, bloodstream, or brain.
  • Issues due to anesthesia used 

Final Takeaway

In the end, CoolSculpting is a procedure taken in use when you have little quantity of body fat to remove. More suitable for the ones who want to remove fat from specific areas of their body. It’s a very safe procedure that you can trust and doesn’t require much recovery time.

Whereas, on the other hand, Liposuction is the one used for removing large amounts of fat. The recovery time as compared to CoolSculpting is much longer and also there are some of serious risks associated with Liposuction. 

If you are the one who wants to lose weight, you must have a strict healthy diet and a workout routine. It is very important to have a good diet and fitness regime else you will regain the fat you lost through these procedures. 

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