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FDA approves new way to freeze body fat

11:33 PM, Oct 8, 2010   |    comments
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No matter how much you exercise, eat healthy and take care of yourself, sometimes it can be tough to tackle those love handles.

The Food and Drug Administration just approved a new alternative to liposuction that helps you fight fat by freezing it without any anesthesia, scarring or downtime. It's called Cool Sculpting by Zeltiq.

Pam Bremmer is one of the first people in Tampa Bay to try the fat freezing procedure. She is an avid runner but says exercise has not helped her get rid of a few annoying extra pounds. She hopes the non-invasive fat fighter will flatten her stomach.

"I hope it smooths out my abdomen and hopefully it will motivate me a litte more to do some situps on my own," says Bremmer.

Dr. Jeffrey Hunt, Medical Director, of the Vein and Cosmetic Center of Tampa Bay says this new procedure is perfect for people like Pam who are already in good shape but have minor trouble spots.

Unlike traditional liposuction, you can do this during the lunch hour.

Dr. Hunt says,"Now we have a way for fat to go away and no one even knows they were treated. There are no punctures, there's no scars, there's no body suit, there's no down time."

Here's how it works: the machine sucks the fatty skin in between two cold plates for about an hour. Dr. Hunt says when fat freezes, it is damaged by cooler temperatures much before nerves, arteries or the skin are damaged.

Since fat cells are more vulnerable to freezing temperatures, doctors say Pam's body will absorb and eliminate them. Dr. Hunt says the treated area is typically numb and sore and it may cramp for about two weeks, but after that it's back to normal. Over the next two months, 20 to 25 percent of the fat layer is permanently eliminated.

We wanted to know what does it feel like?

Pam says, "I feel a little cold sensation on my skin, but that is it. It wasn't uncomfortable." She likes that she was able to have it done during her lunchbreak.

Cool Sculpting costs about $600 per area and some areas may require several treatments.

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