Emsculpt® and CoolSculpting® are two popular body contouring treatments among patients seeking a non-invasive way to remove unwanted body fat. While there is some overlap in the benefits of these two treatments, they are very different. To determine which is right for you, it is important to understand how each of these treatments work.
What Is Emsculpt®?
Emsculpt® is a medical device that is FDA-approved for breaking down fat cells and strengthening muscle tissue. Emsculpt® harnesses the power of High-Intensity Focused Electromagnetic (HIFEM®) technology to stimulate motor neurons and induce deep contractions within striated muscle tissue. Because the Emsculpt® machine can target just striated muscles, it does not affect the skin, surrounding tissues, or organs (such as the stomach) that are partially made up of smooth muscle tissue.
During treatments, the Emsculpt® machine induces what is known as supramaximal contractions — muscle contractions that are far more intense than what is possible through voluntary workouts. During one 30 minute Emsculpt® treatment session, the muscles being targeted contract approximately 20,000 times. These rapid contractions cause the body to release adrenaline and initiate a process called lipolysis. During lipolysis, stored fat cells are released, broken down, metabolized, and eventually excreted naturally.
Emsculpt® can be used to remove fat and strengthen muscles in the following regions of the body:
What Is CoolSculpting®?
CoolSculpting® is also an FDA-approved treatment used to remove fat. Through a process called cryolipolysis, the CoolSculpting® machine eliminates excess fat cells by freezing them. During treatments, a section of fat is placed between two panels that cool the fat cells. This cooling process does not affect the skin or surrounding tissues in the same way it does fat cells, so this treatment only targets unwanted stored fat. After treatments, the frozen fat cells die off and are eventually excreted naturally by the body.
CoolSculpting® can be used to target unwanted pockets of fat in the following sections of the body:
- Lower Back
Emsculpt® vs. CoolSculpting® – What Are the Major Differences?
In addition to the fact that these two machines use completely different technology, Emsculpt® and CoolSculpting® serve different types of patients. CoolSculpting® can help patients who are overweight get rid of larger pockets of fat. Emsculpt® delivers the best results to patients who are already close to their target weight but are looking to strengthen, shape, and tone certain stubborn areas. Some patients benefit from a treatment regimen that includes both Emsculpt® and CoolSculpting®. This regimen typically consists of CoolSculpting® first and then Emsculpt® several months later.
Because Emsculpt® not only breaks down fat cells but strengthens muscle tissue, it offers added benefits such as improved joint stability. Emsculpt® can be incorporated into a treatment plan along with physical therapy to help athletes get back on their feet and into the game faster after sustaining certain injuries. Everyday people can use Emsculpt® to kickstart a new fitness routine and help build core strength to avoid injury when attempting new workouts.
Emsculpt® is a particularly effective tool for weight loss as well. Combined research from 7 clinical studies found that Emsculpt® treatments reduced subcutaneous abdominal fat by an average of 19%, increased muscle mass by an average of 16%, and reduced waist circumference by an average of 4.4 centimeters. The improved muscle mass resulting Emsculpt® treatments works to increase one’s basal metabolic rate, which means that you are burning more calories while at rest.
The precise number of treatments and length of sessions differs as well. Emsculpt® treatments last approximately 30 minutes each, and a full regimen typically consists of four sessions. Patients who undergo CoolSculpting® treatment often only require one or two treatments, but each session is longer (lasting approximately 60 minutes).
One of the reasons Emsculpt® has skyrocketed to popularity is that many patients see a noticeable difference after the very first treatment. Patients who get CoolSculpting® typically begin to see results starting at four weeks after receiving their first treatment and see full results after six months.
Emsculpt® vs. CoolSculpting® – How Are They Similar?
While these two treatments work very differently, they do have some distinct similarities. Emsculpt® and CoolSculpting® can both help patients get rid of fat. Both treatments are non-invasive and require zero downtime afterward. A major benefit of both treatment options is that patients can return to their normal activities immediately after treatment.
How to Know Which One Is Right For You
There are several factors to consider when choosing between Emsculpt® vs. CoolSculpting® treatments. Firstly, if muscle strengthening and toning is important to you, Emsculpt® is the better choice to help you reach your goals. If your main goal is to remove fat, CoolSculpting® is a great way to get rid of larger pockets of stored fat cells.
It is also important to note that while both of these treatments are non-invasive and mostly painless, they cannot be used on all patients. If you have been diagnosed with cryoglobulinemia, cold agglutinin disease (CAD), or paroxysmal cold hemoglobinuria (PCH), then you should not get CoolSculpting®. If you suffer from one of these conditions, Emsculpt® may still be an option.
Alternatively, Emsculpt® is not recommended for women who are pregnant. Because the Emsculpt® machine uses electromagnetism, it can also interfere with metals. If you have any implanted metal devices, pieces, or components (including a pacemaker, metal plate, screws, or metal-based IUD), you should not receive Emsculpt® treatments. The best way to determine which of these treatments is right for you is to talk to your doctor.
Are you interested in learning more? You’ll find more information on the Aspire Regenerative Emsculpt® treatment page! You can also book a consultation at Aspire Regenerative to see if Emsculpt® is right for you. Our doctors will make treatment recommendations based on your unique medical history, as well as your health and wellness goals.