Newly FDA-approved Zeltiq (it was approved in 2010) is already piquing the public's interest with its ability to reduce fat by way of "freezing" it. Zeltiq, also known as CoolSculpting, is a method of literally freezing fat away. It's not magic, it's science!
When cooled, fat cells die at a lower temperature than skin cells, a fact which Zeltiq takes advantage of. It uses a contained suction device to cool the skin and the fat beneath it from the outside, getting it cold enough (to about 40 degrees) so that fat cells are damaged but skin cells aren't.
Zeltiq Aesthetics is actually the name of the treatment's manufacturer - the fat freezer is marketed under the brand name CoolSculpting. It's no replacement for liposuction, though it too is best used on those stubborn pockets of fat that resist diet and exercise.
What It's Good For
Muffin tops, meet your match. In the countries where Zeltiq has been used, it has removed fat on the back, abdomen, and those not so lovable love handles. Doubtlessly, though, it can be used effectively in other areas, which may gain approval as Zeltiq continues to attract market share.
Who it works for: The ideal candidate for a Zeltiq procedure is of normal weight and has moderate fat pockets, like love handles, which they'd like to get rid of. In order to be considered for Zeltiq, you should be within 10 to 15 pounds of your ideal body weight (you can calculate your BMI online if you're unsure).
Recommended age range: Zeltiq is unlikely to be performed on patients younger than 18, and with good reason. At this age, diet and exercise are still the best weight loss options. Zeltiq should be used mainly as a last resort.
When will I see results?: Zeltiq won't get rid of excess fat right away. During the weeks after treatment, your body will begin to recognize, process, and dispose of the damaged fat cells, but the process is not exactly speedy.
Ultimately, patients can expect to see a 20 to 25 percent reduction in fat within four to 12 weeks of getting Zeltiq.
How long it lasts: As with all weight loss procedures, getting Zeltiq is not a license to start binging on ice cream and bacon. With proper diet and exercise, the inches may stay off for good.
Key benefits of Zeltiq (CoolSculpting): Zeltiq isn't as good as liposuction at handling large pockets of fat. Clinical studies have shown a decrease in fat volume by 20 to 40 percent. Unlike liposuction, Zeltiq is non-invasive, and there is no post-procedural downtime.
Licensed uses: Zeltiq was approved by the FDA in September 2010 for body contouring.