Blog

Conveniently located to serve Columbus, Cincinnati, and Cleveland

Enhancing the midsection: CoolSculpting vs. Liposuction vs. Tummy Tuck

Whether it’s fat or excess skin, a large portion of our patients visit us with concerns about their midsection, but they don’t always know what options they have available to them. For this reason, we make sure that during these consultations we lay out all of the procedures offered here at CIPS that can tackle those concerns, from non-invasive treatments like CoolSculpting to invasive surgeries such as liposuction and abdominoplasty, i.e. tummy tuck.

Let’s start with the least invasive of the three: CoolSculpting. CoolSculpting is a treatment that requires nothing more than a couple of hours and some blankets (provided by us, of course)—it gets cold! It is a treatment that works by freezing, and thus eliminating, fat cells at -11 degrees Celsius using an applicator on a specific area of the body. Once the cells have been frozen and are no longer living, the body rids itself of them during its natural process, and voila! Fat be gone. Because the fat leaves the body over time and is not physically removed as it would be with a surgery, however, results takes a little bit longer to be seen. CoolSculpting patients typically don’t see them until about three months post-treatment, and they are definitely more subtle than those seen post-surgery. This option is best suited for individuals who are looking to treat smaller areas of stubborn fat—it will not help get rid of excess skin.

Pros

  • No recovery/downtime
  • No anesthesia
  • No incisions
  • No surgery

Cons

  • Results take up to three months to show
  • Results are subtle
  • Multiple sessions may be necessary

Next up: liposuction. This is a procedure that requires anesthesia, typically IV sedation (also known as twilight anesthesia), and uses what’s called a cannula to physically suck fat out of the body. Liposuction incisions are tiny—about the size of a mosquito bite—and are therefore easy to hide or cover with clothing. Like CoolSculpting, this tackles fat as opposed to excess skin.

Pros

  • Immediate results
  • Significant results
  • Permanent results (unless excessive weight is gained)
  • Small incision scars

Cons

  • Anesthesia
  • Recovery/downtime and swelling

Last but not least, the most invasive procedure of the three: tummy tuck. Technically known as an abdominoplasty, this surgery is the best way to get rid of loose or excess skin. Fat is removed as well, but in very little amounts—the main purpose of a tummy tuck is to tighten and flatten the skin of the abdomen. General anesthesia is required, as it is very invasive, and an incision is made hip-to-hip to begin the removal of the skin. Once it is removed, the abdominal muscles are pulled tighter together in order to accentuate the waist slightly. The scar left across the hips will fade over time, however it takes a few years. Until then, hiding it is easy as Dr. Shah makes sure that the incision is made low enough to be covered by underwear.

Pros

  • Immediate results
  • Significant results
  • Permanent results (unless excessive weight is gained)

Cons

  • Large scar that stretches hip-to-hip
  • General anesthesia
  • Long recovery/downtime and swelling

Many patients choose to combine liposuction and tummy tuck to rid themselves of excess fat and skin around the midsection. CoolSculpting is typically done on its own, although some patients decide to undergo surgery after finding that CoolSculpting alone doesn’t provide results as significant as liposuction, a tummy tuck, or both. Whichever you choose, Dr. Shah and our patient coordinators are there with you every step of the way to ensure that you know the ins and outs of your procedure. Dr. Shah, our surgical team, and our CoolSculpting specialists are the best of the best, and you can trust that you are in good (and very experienced) hands no matter what. If you would like to book a consultation with Dr. Shah, or learn more about any of these procedures, call (614) 482-2123 or email office@instituteplasticsurgery.com today.