Published on October 6, 2021, Updated on October 6, 2021
Linda Evangelista Plastic Surgery: CoolSculpting Went Wrong | Filed $50 Million Lawsuit Against Zeltiq. Photo credit: Instagram/lindaevangelista
Supermodel Linda Evangelista, 56, resorted to social media to reveal that she suffers from side effects after undergoing CoolSculpting, a topical surgery that freezes fat cells.
Following fat-melting treatments, a rare adverse effect known as Paradoxical Adipose Hyperplasia (PAH) might develop in the weeks and months in which fat cells grow and harden. This and other side effects that patients are advised about before undergoing CoolSculpting may require surgery to correct.
In September 2021, Evangelista revealed that a cosmetic body-sculpting treatment that she had more than five years ago left her “brutally disfigured” and “unrecognizable,” instead of lowering fat; it expanded them. In an Instagram post on 22 September, she mentioned filing a lawsuit, adding:
It was “a big step towards righting a wrong that I have suffered and kept to myself for over five years.”
So, what really happened to the supermodel of the 1990s? And, what is CoolSculpting? Let’s learn in detail.
In an Instagram post on 22 September 2021, the Canadian model, who was a major presence on the runways and magazine covers in the 1990s, revealed that she had undergone fat-reduction surgery five years ago. She wrote:
“To my followers who have wondered why I have not been working while my peers’ careers have been thriving, the reason is that I was brutally disfigured by Zeltiq’s CoolSculpting procedure which did the opposite of what it promised.”
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Evangelista said she had an uncommon side effect known as paradoxical adipose hyperplasia, which caused hardened protruding fat masses across her body. She told:
“PAH has not only destroyed my livelihood, it has sent me into a cycle of deep depression, profound sadness, and the lowest depths of self-loathing. In the process, I have become a recluse.”
Evangelista filed the case against Zeltiq Aesthetics, the California company behind CoolSculpting, in federal court in New York on 21 September, accusing the firm of negligence, false advertising, and failing to warn customers about potential adverse effects.
According to the lawsuit, Evangelista underwent seven treatments between 2015 and 2016 to break down fat on her thighs, belly, back, flanks, and chin. She developed “hard, bulging, painful masses under her skin in those areas” within a few months. The PAH did not respond to corrective surgery.
She’s demanding $50 million in damages for lost income and emotional suffering, claiming that she’s no longer employable as a model and hasn’t made anything since 2016.
CoolSculpting is an FDA-approved, in-office therapy. A doctor or certified aesthetician uses a device to freeze fat cells in a specific area — most typically the stomach, thighs, and buttocks — thereby destroying the undesired tissue and leaving you with fewer fat cells.
The dead fat cells are gradually expelled from the body over the next few months, revealing a slimmer appearance by up to 20% in the treated area. The effects are claimed to be long-lasting.
CoolSculpting targets stubborn fat pockets in areas of the body that have resisted diet and exercise. However, patients often choose CoolSculpting for a surgical procedure since it is considered to be safer and less risky. Patients typically require two to four CoolSculpting sessions to obtain the desired effect, with results emerging four months after the operation.
Dr. Vega says:
“What happened to Linda Evangelista is a terrible reminder that there can always be side effects or adverse events when you undergo a medical procedure.”
“Seeing a physician who can properly guide you through the possible risks and benefits is critical in terms of having a complete informed consent.”
(Reference from CNN.com, Instyle.com, Nytimes.com)