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As we age, we lose collagen, which acts as the skin’s support structure, and helps maintain its shape. In fact, 70% of the skin is composed as collagen, and collagen loss causes the skin to lose its elasticity and moisture. A common misconception about facial aging involves the role of gravity. The real culprit is deflation (loss of volume and structure) rather than descent (drooping or sagging).
What to Know
Collagen is a strong, flexible fibrous type of protein that is found throughout our bodies, including our bones, muscles, tendons and in the middle or dermis layer of the skin. It acts as skin’s support structure or scaffolding that helps maintain skin’s shape. As we age, our body’s collagen production decreases. Gradually, skin loses its youthful bounce, leading to lines, wrinkles, and folds, as well as a loss of skin volume and support.
Think of collagen like springs in a mattress. Over time, the springs weaken and the mattress on top starts to sag and crease. Similar changes in our skin happen as a result of both natural aging and sun exposure.
The good news is that it’s possible to help boost the skin’s own natural collagen production. Sculptra Aesthetic is the only FDA-approved facial injectable treatment on the market that helps boost the skin’s own natural collagen production to help treat the underlying cause of aging – the loss of collagen. In doing so, it subtly and gradually adds volume that lifts the soft tissues and plumps the skin from within.
Restores Facial Volume and Provides Support to the skin to improve the look of smile lines (called nasolabial folds), marionette lines, pre-auricular wrinkles (the vertical wrinkles in front of the ears), radial cheek folds (vertical wrinkles on the lower cheek) and chin wrinkles.
Provides Gradual and Natural-Looking Results that become visible over a period of a few months.
Long-Lasting: Lasts more than two years.
How is Sculptra Different from Other Fillers?
Unlike traditional hyaluronic acid (HA) fillers, which work immediately upon injection to fill in lines, wrinkles and folds, Sculptra Aesthetic is made from Poly-L-lactic acid (PLLA), which helps stimulate your skin’s own natural collagen production over time, helping to reinforce skin’s inner structure and increase facial volume that has been lost to aging. PLLA is a biodegradable substance that has been proven safe and has been used in medical products, including dissolvable sutures, for more than 30 years. It contains no animal by-products or human DNA.
The typical treatment regimen for Sculptra Aesthetic consists of three injections over three to four months. Results appear gradually over a period of a few months, and are long-lasting, more than two years. In contrast, HA fillers last until the HA is absorbed by the body and excreted (typically 6 to 12 months after injection).
Who Is A Good Candidate?
If you want to appear more youthful-looking — without appearing like you’ve had work done — then chances are Sculptra Aesthetic may be a good choice for you. Neurotoxins such as and Botox can provide dramatic results in reducing lines. The Juvederm line of hyaluronic fillers also reverse the signs of aging by filling in deep folders to take years off your face while still looking natural. However, neurotoxins and fillers are sometimes not enough. Through weight loss, aging, or other factors, some people lack the structure, support, and volume in their face that’s necessary for fillers to make a desired difference in their appearance. These patients need a “framework” to which hyaluronic acid fillers can be layered on top. Men and women of any age can have success with Sculptra if they are concerned with hollowness and/or loss of volume.
How Does It Work?
Once injected Sculptra Aesthetic works deep within the skin’s surface and is gradually and naturally absorbed by the body to help stimulate collagen production to reinforce skin’s inner structure and increase facial volume.
How Many Treatments Will I Need?
On average, a series of three treatment sessions over the course of a few months may be needed. The number of injections at each session will vary, depending on the degree of correction needed and the treatment plan determined by you and your specialist. A maximum of 2 vials can be injected per treatment, so expect to come in for at least 2 treatments, with 6 weeks between each treatment.
Since the product triggers your body to build its own collagen, results are not immediate and can take anywhere from 4-6 months. Changes can continue through the 9th month to realize the full results.
Avoid using aspirin, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications (such as ibuprofen), St. John’s wort or high doses of vitamin E supplements. These agents may increase bruising and bleeding at the injection site.
Tell us if you have previously suffered from facial cold sores. We may prescribe a medication to minimize recurrence.
**In order to get the best results from Sculptra, we strongly recommend the purchase of a tailored to you skin care regimen by one of our Licensed Medical Aestheticians to prep your face for the procedure, support healing, and maintain the outcome.
Post Treatment Instructions
Technically, there is no actual downtime. It is an in-spa treatment that takes less than an hour to perform. Patients can resume their normal day activities. Like dermal fillers, there may be some swelling at the injection sites which will generally resolve within a week. Mild to moderate bruising, tenderness, itching, and redness are other common side-effects. Do not get a facial or massage for 2 weeks after your filler procedure. Avoid strenuous workouts and alcohol for 24 hours if possible.
Massage the treated areas 5 times a day for about 5 minutes for 5 days after treatment to distribute solution and help prevent nodule formation. This may be uncomfortable and even painful for the first few days, but it is necessary. The easiest time to massage is when the face is moistened with cleanser or moisturizer.
Hold ice packs on the treated areas gently for about 3-5 minutes a few times that day.
Makeup can be worn a few hours after.
A few days after treatment, you will look as you did before treatment. This is normal because Sculptra will replace lost collagen over time. The improvement comes slowly and gradually as collagen is being rebuilt.
A possible side effect can be the delayed appearance of tiny nodules under the skin up to 12 months after treatment. They are palpable, but not visible. The development can be minimized by following the post treatment massage instructions.
Sculptra is an FDA-approved dermal filler that contains poly-L-lactic acid (PLLA), a biocompatible and biodegradable substance. Unlike traditional fillers, Sculptra works by stimulating the body’s natural collagen production. When injected into the skin, Sculptra acts as a “bio-stimulator,” gradually replacing lost collagen and restoring volume, resulting in a more youthful appearance.
Sculptra is primarily used to address facial volume loss and wrinkles caused by aging. It is especially effective in treating deep lines and folds, such as nasolabial folds (smile lines) and marionette lines (lines from the corners of the mouth to the chin). Sculptra can also enhance facial contours and improve the appearance of sunken cheeks and temples.
The results of Sculptra are not immediate, as it works by stimulating collagen production gradually. Patients typically notice improvements after a few weeks. The results can last up to two years or longer, making Sculptra a long-lasting option for facial rejuvenation.
Sculptra has been used safely for facial enhancement for many years. It is FDA-approved and considered safe when administered by a qualified and experienced healthcare provider. Common side effects include swelling, bruising, redness, or tenderness at the injection site, but these are usually mild and temporary.
The number of Sculptra treatments required varies depending on individual factors, such as the degree of volume loss and the treatment goals. Typically, patients undergo a series of two to four treatment sessions, spaced about four to six weeks apart. Results are gradually noticeable over time.
Yes, Sculptra can be combined with other cosmetic treatments to enhance overall facial rejuvenation. It is often used in combination with other dermal fillers, such as hyaluronic acid fillers like Juvederm, or with Botox to address dynamic wrinkles. Combining treatments can lead to more comprehensive and natural-looking results.
Sculptra injections require minimal downtime. Some patients may experience mild swelling, bruising, or redness at the injection sites, but these side effects usually resolve within a few days. Most individuals can resume their normal daily activities immediately after the procedure.
Sculptra is an excellent option for individuals who have experienced facial volume loss due to aging or other factors. It is generally suitable for healthy adults seeking a natural-looking and long-lasting solution for facial rejuvenation. Pregnant or breastfeeding individuals should avoid Sculptra treatments. It’s essential to consult with a qualified healthcare provider to determine if Sculptra is the right choice based on your specific needs and medical history.
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