WHICH ONE IS RIGHT FOR YOU?
CoolSculpting, Vanquish or Liposuction
Today we take a closer look at a few of the most popular treatments available for fat reduction. One of the most advertised treatments today is Coolsculpting. Many of you may have seen the TV ads or billboards along the highway. They promise a pain-free and effortless way to remove fat by freezing it.
This has prompted many questions from our patients about how it compares to other treatments available. Some of these questions include: What exactly is it? Does it really work and if so, how well does it work? How much should I expect to pay? How do I know if it is right for me?
Today’s article will address those very questions and hopefully provide you with some information that can help you make the right choice. If you have questions you may schedule a free consultation with Dr. Finder by filling out the form below. We are here to help you make the right cosmetic choice.
Maximum Fat Reduction
Abdominal Liposuction vs. “Tummy Tuck”
80 – 85%
Liposuction, when performed by a skilled surgeon, can easily remove 80% to 85% of the fat.
25 – 30%
Vanquish fat reduction, through the use of radio frequency (which uses heat rather than cold), will remove about 20% to 30% of the fat from an area.
15 – 25%
There is no question that Coolsculpting works. Treatments can remove 15% to 25% of the fat that is sucked within the applicator. Unfortunately, it takes time for the fat cells to die off and to be completely removed so results can take two
As far as fat removal goes, liposuction has the biggest upper hand compared to the other treatments. Vanquish will remove between 20% and 30% of the fat from an area. While similar in the amount of fat both Vanquish and Coolsculpting can remove, Coolsculpting provides a more localized fat removal while Vanquish provides a broader result.
Liposuction under local anesthesia usually takes 2 to 3 hours. It takes a day or two to recover sufficiently to resume your normal daily activities, and most patients are back at a regular exercise routine within weeks. The removal of the fat is immediate, but it will take a couple of weeks for the initial swelling to subside enough to appreciate the new shape
Vanquish treatments take about 45 minutes to perform and require that you come for 4 to 6 treatments about a week to two weeks apart. Much like Coolsculpting, the results from Vanquish will take several months to reach maximum results.
The marketing behind Coolsculpting makes it sound effortless. Sit in a chair for a bit and it is done. The actual treatment for a site takes a full hour and with only little discomfort. Unfortunately, to do an area larger than what fits within the applicator takes more than one treatment. So for example, if you have saddlebags on both sides, it takes at least two hours because each side has to be treated. Then you must wait several months before the results to fully appear. A second series of treatments may be planned but they must be done several months after the first.
WINNER: Tie among all three.
Based on convenience all three procedures rank about the same for different reasons. Liposuction is a short term hassle but with quicker results. Vanquish and Coolsculpting cause less hassle at each treatment but require many treatments over a much longer time.
Liposuction is invasive surgery but when done under local anesthesia by a skilled and experienced surgeon is incredibly safe. Almost all of the complications involving liposuction can be traced to using general or IV sedation rather than local anesthesia. There are risks, such as minor skin irregularities, or infection, but these are not common
Vanquish treatments are well tolerated though there can be some mild discomfort. There are no serious side effects after treatment. Though very uncommon, there are times when a reaction to the heat will cause mild burns to occur. These reactions will usually heal completely in a few days time.
Coolsculpting has little risk when properly performed. The majority of patients will have no long term issues though there have been a few troublesome side effects that have surfaced. The most common is severe pain that begins a few days after treatment and can last several weeks.
The other major side effect is a surprising increase in fat in the treated area that occurs 2-3 months after treatment and appears to last for good.
The cause of these two side effects is unclear. Luckily, they are not common and are still being investigated.
Based on risks, Vanquish is the ultimate winner. Coolsculpting is second, but local anesthesia liposuction is a close third.
Price / Value
Liposuction has a base amount for the first site and the price build depending on how many additional sites are added. A typical price for a small area can easily be $3000. A larger area, comparable to what is being attempted with Coolscultping, will generally be between $4000 and $6000. But remember, liposuction will provide a far greater fat reduction than either Coolsculpting or Vanquish treatments can ever produce.
Vanquish generally takes between 4 to 6 treatments for good results. A typical regimen of Vanquish will run between $1400 and $2100.
Coolsculpting costs will vary greatly depending on the size of the applicator tip. Single treatments can range anywhere from $750 all the way up to $1250 each. A typical Coolsculpting regimen can range between $2000 and $4000 while an aggressive treatment approach will place you in the $6000 to $8000 range.
WINNER: Liposuction. If money is tight, then Vanquish wins.
At The Face and Body Place, Dr. Kimberly Finder infuses the area to be treated with a large quantity of dilute local anesthetic tumescent fluid. After the area has been numbed, the fat extraction process begins.
The fat is removed through a small instrument called a cannula. The cannula is inserted through small openings in the skin into the fat space, and the fat cells are then gently suctioned out. This process is repeated over the entire area where fat removal is desired.
Liposuction has long been the gold standard when it comes to fat removal. An important question that most patients ask is, once the fat cells are removed, do they grow back? The answer is NO, they do not grow back which is one of the key advantages of liposuction surgery. However, Dr. Finder stresses that weight maintenance is still very important!
Vanquish is a non-surgical, non-invasive procedure used to kill fat cells. Unlike CoolSculpting though, Vanquish uses radiofrequency energy to heat and kill the fat cells. The body then naturally flushes them out of your system.
Vanquish treatments take approximately 45 minutes and deliver an even distribution of heat over the target area due to the unrestricted nature of the handpiece. It is because of this that Vanquish is able to perform fat reduction evenly across a wide area.
The Coolsculpting device is made of two parts. There is the main device that provides cooling and vacuum suction, and an applicator that is placed on the skin to suck in the fatty tissue between two cooling pads. The pads are used to cool down the fat layer while not damaging the other tissues. How much fat can be sucked in and cooled depends on the size of the applicator but generally is it about a handful.
It typically takes about an hour for the treatment, at which point the fat has solidified and frozen. The frozen fat is then massaged for several minutes. This massage is very important as it helps further damage the fats cells and leads to better results.
Coolsculpting fits somewhere between liposuction and Vanquish fat removal. It is not as good as liposuction but costs just as much. On the other hand, it is no better than RF but often at twice the price. Regardless of all the current media attention and advertising, it is not the right solution for most people. When patients understand the true costs and tradeoffs of using Coolsculpting they generally do not choose to go that route.
Being good at liposuction takes time and effort to master. Many of the physicians who promote Coolsculpting are physicians who do not do liposuction. They are looking for a way to provide fat removal for their patients without the inconvenience of having to learn and develop their skill in liposuction.
We are proud to offer liposuction, vanquish, and weight loss programs to our patients. And while we will not provide Coolsculpting, we understand that there will be patients who may want to have a very focal area of fat removed but unwilling to undergo liposuction. We want to provide those patients with sound advice and good choices. We are always researching providers who offer Coolsculpting in here in San Antonio so that we are able to recommend our patients to the right person to see if Coolsculting is what is right for them.
If you are interested in fat reduction treatments and are not sure which treatment is best for you, schedule a complimentary consultation by filling out the form below. Dr. Kimberly Finder will recommend the best path to help you achieve your aesthetic goals.
A Message from Dr. Finder
Today patients are bombarded with so much information, some of it good, some of it questionable, and some just hype, that it is so easy to be confused and frustrated over what to do. I love helping our patients make sense of all this information to determine what is best for them.”
Kimberly Finder M.D.
Board Certified Dermatologist Specializing in Cosmetic Dermatology
Financing Options Available
We offer convenient 3rd party financing to our patients. We will walk you through every step of the application process to answer any questions that might arise. We work with both Prosper Healthcare Lending and Care Credit to help you get the right treatment with the right financial solution.
14855 Blanco Rd. Suite #100, San Antonio, TX, 78216. Phone: 210-880-1007.
Schedule a free consultation to receive personalized pricing. Must be a candidate for treatments. By submitting the form you consent to receive more information from a patient consultant. Information submitted is confidential.
*Disclaimer: Individual results vary. Treatment or procedures mentioned do not claim to treat, prevent, or cure a disease. The use of this website does not create a physician/patient relationship between you and Dr. Kimberly Finder. The photographs of models displayed on this website are for decorative purposes. Information is meant for educational purposes and not intended for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.