Linda Evangelista says she is ‘permanently deformed’ after cosmetic treatment

Supermodel claims she has been left unrecognisable after a fat-freezing procedure

Linda Evangelista, who as one of the original 1990s supermodels, alongside Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell, dominated the catwalk and fashion-magazine covers in the 1980s and 1990s, says she is "permanently deformed" after nonsurgical cosmetic surgery went wrong.

In a post on Instagram, Evangelista claimed that after having a procedure known as coolsculpting, which involves “freezing” fat on the body and is similar to body contouring, she developed complications that have radically changed her appearance.

“I have developed Paradoxical Adipose Hyperplasia … [it] 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.”

The model says that she has kept to herself for five years. “I have been left, as the media has described it, ‘unrecognisable’.”

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Writing in the comments of her post, members of the fashion community showed support for Evangelista. “You are and always will be a supermodel,” wrote the fashion designer Jeremy Scott. Marc Jacobs, another designer, said: “I love you dear Linda.” The editor of British Vogue, Edward Enninful, echoed the sentiments, saying: “Always brave and inspiring.”

Naomi Campbell wrote: “I applaud you for your courage and strength to share your experience and not be held hostage by it any more. I can’t image the pain you [have] gone through mentally these past 5 years.”

Evangelista’s post mentioned a lawsuit and she said she intended to move “forward to rid myself of my shame.”

The Guardian has approached Allergan, which owns CoolSculpting, for comment. – Guardian