What Is Sculptra®?
Sculptra is a volumizing injectable treatment that is often referred to as a dermal filler. This product, made from poly-L-lactic acid (PLLA), reinforces the skin's structure while simultaneously stimulating collagen remodeling in the deeper layers of the skin. poly-L-lactic acid is a synthetic gel that comes from the same lactic acid that the body produces naturally. This substance is also very similar to what is used to make dissolvable stitches, indicating its safety for injectable use. Sculptra has been developed to restore fullness to the face and correct moderate to severe lines and creases such as smile lines, marionette lines, and nasolabial folds.
Getting older may mean collecting memories and wisdom, but it also means losing volume across the structural areas of the face. As we age, the very structure of our face can change as a result of thinning and volume loss. Without sufficient volume in the soft tissues, the face may begin to look more angular and hollowed over time. At West End Plastic Surgery, we offer several choices for beautiful, natural-looking facial restoration. Sculptra is one of them.
How is Sculptra Different from Other Injectables?
When a traditional dermal filler like JUVÉDERM or Restylane is injected into the skin, the product works by binding to water molecules. This plumps lines and creases up to the surface, virtually eliminating wrinkles. These fillers can also increase tissue volume in areas like the lips and cheeks to restore the youthful angles and definition of these features. When the poly-L-lactic acid gel is injected into the deeper layers of the skin, it induces collagen production. Some degree of volume increase can be seen right away after Sculptra treatment. However, this injectable is made to work more subtly and gradually over time through natural collagen proliferation. To achieve optimal results from Sculptra, you need a few appointments scheduled over several weeks. These results can last two years or longer. Also, where hyaluronic acid dermal fillers are reversible, Sculptra is not.
Who is a Good Candidate for Sculptra?
Ideal candidates for Sculptra treatment are adults who have experienced considerable volume loss or facial thinning due to collagen depletion. Collagen is a critical structural component of the skin, promoting firmness and resiliency. As we age, our bodies do not make the same amount of collagen and elastin as is common in our youth. Sculptra mitigates this natural decline by stimulating the body to continue making healthy new collagen in a specified area. One of the primary benefits of the Sculptra product is that the PLLA in this filler is inert. It does not pose a risk of allergic reaction. This makes Sculptra a good option for most adults who want to correct the signs of aging without surgery. Sculptra candidates are in good health, have a strong immune system, are free of skin conditions in the treatment area, and have a clear understanding of their expected outcome after consulting with their experienced provider. It is our desire to help every one of our patients achieve a treatment outcome that supports their self-confidence. Each patient process begins with a thorough consultation and evaluation of the skin to ensure we make the most appropriate treatment recommendations.
How Long Does a "Liquid Facelift" Take?
Sculptra is sometimes referred to as the "liquid facelift" of fillers. Each treatment session may take 30 minutes or less. However, the entire treatment process occurs over several weeks to ensure that collagen production is sustained for an adequate period of time. If you choose to address your cosmetic concerns using Sculptra, you can expect to begin seeing appreciable improvements two to three months after your treatment.
Is it safe?
The material in Sculptra®, poly-L-lactic acid, is a synthetic version of the substance that your muscles naturally produce during exercise. This material has been used in plastic and reconstructive surgery for more than 20 years. Sculptra® treatment has been used worldwide to improve the appearance of folds and sunken areas of the face and neck.
Approved outside the United States for many years, Sculptra® was recently approved by the U.S. Federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as the only product for the restoration of areas of the face and neck that have become hollow or sunken due to age or illness. While there are some possible minor side effects, medical research shows that Sculptra® injections are safe for most people. However, Sculptra® treatments should only be performed by a Board certified plastic surgeon experienced with all aspects of the procedure. During your initial consultation, the staff and Dr. Ruff of West End Plastic Surgery will address any safety concerns you have regarding the use of Sculptra®.
Where Can Sculptra® Be Used?
Facial fat loss is the loss of fat beneath the skin, which can result in sunken cheeks, indentations, and hollow eyes. This condition can occur due to the effects of aging or certain illnesses. Sculptra® is a safe, synthetic, and biocompatible material that is injected below the surface of the skin in the area of fat loss. It achieves excellent results in all parts of the face including the areas around the eyes and lips, between the mouth and nose, and throughout the cheeks and temples.
How Does Sculptra® Butt Lift Work?
The Sculptra® BBL fills in the dimples, hollowness, and creases to create a fuller, more voluminous butt with injections. The correction is seen immediately, but subsides rather quickly because it is mostly saline. Over the next few weeks, collagen is gradually built up from the injections, and the appearance of your results improve.
A Brazilian Butt Lift with Sculptra® is an extremely easy procedure to perform. There is no liposuction required, no healing/soreness from fat harvest, no need to sit on donuts or in some cases “avoid sitting at all costs”. The procedure takes 30 minutes and is nearly painless. You can expect long lasting improvements in lifting and fullness from Sculptra® which appears gradually over several months. The result of Sculptra® should last years because newly formed collagen lasts 7 years in other areas of the body. Having a minimally invasive alternative to the more intense, surgical options is a great choice for someone who can’t do the recovery time needed. A surgical BBL requires weeks to recover, restrictions on exercise/sitting and sometimes need “redos”.
What Are the Benefits of a Sculptra® Butt Lift?
There are several distinct benefits of Sculptra® Butt Lift procedures instead of a surgical Brazilian Butt Lift, including the following:
- No anesthetic injections are necessary
- Wonderful for lean patients desiring a fuller, shapelier behind
- Short recovery time
- Subtle, natural looking results
- Limited interruption to your daily life
- Procedure takes little as 30 minutes
- Provides a subtle lift and volume to the buttocks area
How Long Does Sculptra® Last?
Sculptra® treatment provides a gradual and significant increase in skin thickness, improving the appearance of folds, indentations, and sunken areas in the face and neck. The results achieved by Sculptra® are natural looking and appear gradually over a few weeks time. Because Sculptra® stimulates the body to produce its own collagen, the results can last up to two years or longer in some cases. Our team may suggest minor touch-up treatments to maintain the desired effect. Of course, results may vary and it is best to discuss your individual case with Dr. Ruff and his staff at West End Plastic Surgery during your initial consultation.
Sculptra® is a crystal clear gel. Its injected directly into the skin in tiny amounts using an ultra-fine needle. The gel fills the skin’s wrinkles and depressions by plumping the skin with water-binding, naturally occurring hyaluronic acid. The doctor may numb the treatment area, however, there is minimal discomfort during or after the procedure. The procedure is simple, convenient, and results are practically instantaneous.
Sculptra® treatments produce a low occurrence of side effects. The most common side effects are temporary redness and mild swelling at the injection site. Both the redness and the swelling generally disappear within seven days of your treatment.
Pre Treatment Instructions
- Prior to your Sculptra treatment please make sure you have not been taking aspirin, ibuprofen, or any other blood thinning medication or supplement for 5-7 days.
- Please come to your appointment with clean skin, free of any make-up or lotions/creams.
- If you have a history of facial cold sores, please inform your provider about medications that you take to minimize risk of reoccurrence.
Post Treatment Instructions
- A temporary amount of mild-moderate swelling and redness at the injection site can occur immediately after treatment. This is a normal occurrence and will reduce over the next few days. Cold compresses or ice packs on the treatment area can improve comfort.
- Bruising at the injection site is a common side effect. The extent and duration of bruising can decrease by applying cold compresses and using a topical arnica gel within the first 24 hours after treatment.
- It is normal to experience some tenderness at treatment site for a few days.
- Massage the treated areas with a firm circular motion 3 times daily, for 5 minutes and continue this for 7 days following any injection session.
- A few hours after treatment you may wash the injection site. Please avoid aggressive scrubbing or rubbing.
- Makeup can be applied shortly after treatment unless otherwise noted by treatment provider. Please make sure to apply gently over treatment site.
- Avoid exercise or alcohol for 6 hours after treatment.
- DO NOT have laser, microdermabrasion, chemical peel, or any other aggressive treatments over treatment site for a minimum of 2 weeks.
- Avoid sunbathing or excessive UV exposure until the redness and swelling subside.
- Immediately report any worsening, persistent symptoms, or side effects to the office.
- Follow up injections should be within 4-6 weeks.