New procedure freezes fat cells to death

New procedure freezes fat cells to death

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"It's just frustrating when you get older and things don't come off they way they used to," Jen Greemon said. "It's just frustrating when you get older and things don't come off they way they used to," Jen Greemon said.
Greemon is talking about what she calls her "hip rolls," revealing the problem spots as she gets ready for a new body contouring technique called Coolsculpting.  Greemon is hoping for results like the ones seen on Dr. Reath's website. Greemon is talking about what she calls her "hip rolls," revealing the problem spots as she gets ready for a new body contouring technique called Coolsculpting. Greemon is hoping for results like the ones seen on Dr. Reath's website.
A special applicator pulls the fat bulge into its cooling panels. The cold is intense. A special applicator pulls the fat bulge into its cooling panels. The cold is intense.
The process, called Coolsculpting, literally freezes fat cells to death. The process, called Coolsculpting, literally freezes fat cells to death.

By LORI TUCKER
6 News Anchor/Reporter

KNOXVILLE (WATE) - Have you seen the billboards and TV spots touting a new way to get rid of fat?

There is no surgery. You're wide awake as some of your fat cells are literally frozen to death.

It's called Coolsculpting.

6 News followed Jen Greemon, 43, through the process at the office of Knoxville Plastic Surgeon Dr. David Reath.

Greemon works out six days a week and watches her diet, but despite her discipline, she feels she needs help with one stubborn area.

"It's just frustrating when you get older and things don't come off they way they used to," she said.

Greemon is talking about what she calls her "hip rolls," revealing the problem spots as she gets ready for a new body contouring technique called Coolsculpting.

Greemon is hoping for results like the ones seen on Dr. Reath's website.

Coolsculpting technology came about in an unusual way. Pediatricians started noticing children who ate a lot of popsicles had a reduction of fat in their faces due to the excessive amount of cold they were exposed to.

The effect of cold on fat cells led scientists at Harvard Medical School to develop Cryolipolysis, the science behind Coolsculpting.

Greemon came in to have the fat cells in her problem spots frozen. They will deteriorate and eventually die.

Dr. Reath's office has two Coolsculpting devices to cut down on the patient's time. Each session takes an hour per area.

A special applicator pulls the fat bulge into its cooling panels. The cold is intense.

"If it takes all that off, I will be a happy camper," said Greemon, laughingly.

Dr. Reath says Greemon is the ideal patient for this type of procedure. It is not, he says, for patients who have a lot of weight to lose.

"The treatment of obesity is not fat reduction," Dr. Reath explains. "Whether it's Coolsculpting, or liposuction, or whatever, it is not weight reduction. This is not a weight reduction procedure."

As anyone should do with any procedure, we got a second opinion, and with it, a thumbs up for Coolsculpting.

Local dermatologist, Dr. Kimberly Grande, concurs with Dr. Reath.

"The ideal candidate is the fit person who does work out, who does have a healthy diet that just has a little pocket of fat that hangs over their lowrise jeans."

We stayed with the patient , Jen Greemon, during the hour of treatment.

When time's up, the suction applicator is removed, leaving shockingly swollen, bulging areas of frozen fat behind.

Those areas are quickly massaged away.

Greemon, pain free, then got ready to go home and continue her healthy lifestyle as she waits for results on one area of her body she didn't have to work hard for.

Dr. Reath's office says results are expected in several weeks.

Coolsculpting is FDA approved for flank area known as love handles and the abdomen.

Possible side effects include bruising in the treated area, temporary pain or discomfort, redness, tenderness to the touch, itching, tingling, and numbness. Numbness can last for several weeks.

Dr. Reath says his patients can return to normal activity after the procedure.

Cost varies among practitioners, but on average, each area of treatment can cost about $1400.

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