SculpSure vs. CoolSculpting: Which is Right for You?
Until recently, there were few options for patients who exercise and follow a healthy diet, yet still suffer from stubborn pockets of fat. This is due to the body’s natural composition.
The human body typically has a fixed number of fat cells. These cells become bigger as we gain weight and smaller as we lose weight, but the actual number of cells remains constant. This is why people often find themselves struggling, and failing, to gain greater definition in the abdominal area. No matter how many crunches you perform, that layer of fat remains.
When CoolSculpting came on the scene a few years ago, it offered patients a noninvasive fat reduction solution, using suction and the application of extreme cold to destroy fat cells. Over the next few months, the patient’s lymphatic system naturally flushes these destroyed fat cells out of the body.
As is common with medical technology, another noninvasive fat reduction solution was also in development. SculpSure received FDA approval in 2014 and is now available as a fat reduction tool.
A similar idea with radically different execution, SculpSure uses heat and laser technology to destroy this same layer of fat cells. It does not require suction, making the procedure possible even for patients without an inch or more of “pinchable” tissue.
How do the Treatments Compare?
Though the two treatments perform the same basic body sculpting function – eradicate fat cells in the treatment area – they vary dramatically in a variety of ways.
|Time||25 minutes||60 minutes|
|SculpSure takes less than half the time as CoolSculpting.|
|Technology||FDA cleared, uses laser technology and heats fat cells to destroy them||FDA cleared, uses suction and freezes fat cells to destroy them|
|SculpSure’s laser technology allows greater accuracy in the treatment area.|
|Applicators||Uses up to 4 laser applicators simultaneously||Uses 1 suction applicator|
|SculpSure not only takes a shorter amount of time to perform – less than half – it also allows patients to treat up to four areas at a time. This means that, if the patient is eliminating love handles, both sides may be treated in a single 25-minute session. CoolSculpting, on the other hand, does not allow treating multiple areas due to the type of applicator the procedure uses. This means that the same procedure to eliminate love handles takes two hours, instead of 25 minutes.|
|Recovery||There is no recovery time.||There is no recovery time.|
|Both treatments are noninvasive and therefore allow patients to return to normal activities immediately. However, CoolSculpting patients have reported “delayed onset pain” within days of treatment, wherein they experience burning, stabbing, shooting pains that do not respond to pain medications.|
|Comfort||Applicator is flat and cool, and cools surrounding tissues while heating fat cells to maintain patient comfort. Patients typically report a mild tingling sensation.||The suction-based applicator, length of treatment, and post-treatment massage combine to make the procedure uncomfortable, and may cause nerve damage.|
|Patients report fewer feelings of discomfort with SculpSure, thanks to the accuracy of the laser, and the cooling treatments to maintain a comfortable temperature.|
|Candidates||The applicator allows treatment even on people with less fat and/or loose skin.||Patient must have enough fat/loose skin to suction into the applicator, at least 1 inch.|
|SculpSure’s laser application allows treatment for those with tighter body types, whereas CoolSculpting works better on patients with more fat.|
|Treatable Areas||FDA approved for abdomen and flanks/sides||FDA approved for abdomen, flanks/sides, inner thigh, outer thigh, double chin|
|SculpSure’s laser application allows treatment of multiple areas simultaneously, and many providers extend treatment to below the neck, inner and outer thighs, above the knees, bra line, and calves. CoolSculpting’s applicator does not offer the same level of flexibility.|
|Cost||Average per treatment = $1,500 (uses four applicators at once)|| |
Small applicator average = $600
Large applicator average = $1,500
|CoolSculpting’s small applicator is equal to two SculpSure applicators; the large applicator is equal to four.|
|Efficiency||24% permanent fat reduction, visible within 6-12 weeks||22% permanent fat reduction, visible in 2-4 months|
|Patients of both procedures experience continued fat loss for weeks after the treatment, as the body flushes away the destroyed fat cells. Final results are permanent, as the fat cells do not regenerate.|
|Results||Laser treatment allows for a smoother result, thanks to heat dispersion and feathering up to 5 cm beyond treatment area||Results may appear uneven, irregular, lumpy, or even “shelf” due to the fact that only suctioned fat is treated|
Frequently Asked Questions
How many years have you been a practicing plastic surgeon?
My first year out of residency was in 2005
Describe your philosophy and approach to cosmetic enhancement and treatment of patients
Philosophy: Superior advice predicated upon evidence-based medicine, innovative insight, and efficient execution.
Treatment goals: Create a natural-appearing, balanced aesthetic enhancement that complements the patient’s unique features.
What’s most important to you when treating patients?
Comfort and security: We strive to achieve the ultimate customer experience. In surgery, much like professional sports, talent typically prevails. Championships however, are won by the teams who subscribe to organizational excellence. Accordingly, with good surgical planning and sound judgment, the majority of routine surgeries follow fairly predictable outcomes. Hence, customer service makes the experience complete. That’s what ultimately differentiates you as a surgeon from the masses. And that is our goal: to exceed our clients expectations.
What does a consultation with you entail?
Initially, patient information is gathered including photographs, salient medical history, and aesthetic goals. Next, I perform a comprehensive consultation utilizing videos and interactive patient education software. Following the consultation, the patient reviews the surgical procedure, peri-operative plans, and financials with the surgical consultant.
What steps does your office take to augment comfort?
We offer several features to augment comfort: A VIP waiting area, complimentary beverage menu, and Wi-Fi connectivity, and complementary usage of iPads.