Sculptra® is an injectable solution designed to stimulate your own bodies collagen to naturally add volume to the areas of injection. Sculptra® is not a volumetric filler but rather a biostimulator. It is made up of Poly-L-Lactic Acid which is a natural substance that your body breaks down and then produces its own collagen in the area of Sculptra® injection. This new collagen is your own and is long lasting, and through a series of Sculptra® injections, areas of volume deficiency can be gradually filled. Sculptra® is FDA approved for the correction of facial lipoatrophy or loss of fat in the face, and can be injected in multiple areas including the cheeks, temples, and jawline.
What Are My Options?
Sculptra® can be used to gradually and effectively correct areas of volume loss such as the cheeks and temples. These areas can appear sunken or hollow, and regional correction of volume can rejuvenate and balance the face. Deep wrinkles and folds within the lower face, including the nasolabial folds, marionette lines and wrinkles within the chin can be treated with Sculptra®.
Sculptra® injections can be combined with other in-office procedures such as volumetric fillers (Juvéderm® or Restylane®) and/or neuromodulators (BOTOX®) to provide a minimally invasive correction of early facial aging.
Sculptra® is a biostimulator and gradually encourages your bodies own collagen deposition in the areas of injection over a 6 week period. Sculptra® injections are usually performed in a series of in-office procedures separated by 6 to 12 weeks, to gradually achieve the goal correction in each area. Typically 2 to 3 injection sessions are needed in each area. The results are long-lasting and natural, but a gradual approach is needed to avoid any lumpiness or over correction in the areas. Sculptra® should not be used in patients who have active skin infections or inflammation (swelling) in the area to be treated, or who are allergic to any of its ingredients.
Through injectable biostimulators like Sculptra®, patients can achieve a natural, youthful appearance with minimal downtime and few side effects. With realistic expectations and good overall health, most patients are satisfied with the results of this procedure, though volumetric replacement is only one component of in-office facial rejuvenation. Ideal patients should be taking care of their skin with active skin care and/or skin resurfacing, as well as the addition of neuromodulators like BOTOX®. Sculptra® is dependent on your own bodies collagen production, and multiple facial regions and/or areas of significant volume loss may require multiple vials of the product and repetitive treatments. Sculptra® is long lasting, but re-injection may be needed to maintain the volumetric correction.
What are the potential side effects of Sculptra® treatments?
Possible side-effects of Sculptra® include bleeding, bruising, swelling, and redness. These things typically resolve on their own and may be avoided by following pre and post-operative directions.
Additional side-effects linked to Sculptra® include scarring, skin discoloration, nodules, lumps, and granulomas. Some of these side-effects may occur several months after treatment. Once again, how well you follow our pre and postoperative instructions can influence the onset and severity of these side-effects.
How should I prepare for Sculptra® Injections?
In preparation for your Sculptra® treatment, we may recommend you stop taking certain medications, supplements, and herbs that thin the blood. If you are a tobacco user, we may recommend you stop several weeks in advance of your procedure as well.
In addition to preparation in advance of your procedure, there will be some same-day instructions to help ensure your absolute comfort. We will provide individualized recommendations, based on your unique needs, during your initial consultation.
Does Sculptra® hurt?
Your skin will be numbed with a topical or local anesthetic prior to treatment. This eliminates any discomfort related to the injection of the filler itself. Following treatment, ice packs will be applied to help prevent or reduce bruising.
To further improve your comfort, safety, and overall experience, we thoroughly clean the skin prior to treatment. And, while lingering discomfort is possible, it should be minimal and easily controlled. Most people see improvement within just a few short days.
Sculptra® injections are done in the office by Dr. Trussler. After a full face consultation where your goals will be discussed and your face and skin evaluated a treatment plan will be presented, including the amount of Sculptra® needed for each area. Sculptra® needs to be reconstituted with sterile water approximately 24 hours prior to injection, therefore the injections may not take place at the same time as your consultation.
Prior to injection the areas will be anesthetized with topical numbing cream and/or local anesthesia. The skin is cleaned with anti-bacterial solution before injections to limit any risk of infection. The areas of injections are cooled with ice packs to limit any localized bruising or swelling. Dr. Trussler uses local anesthetic in the injection solution and injects with a technique that will be comfortable and reliable. The solution is injected under the skin at different depths depending on the area of treatment. Correction is not instantaneous like in a volumetric filler, but the areas of injection are confirmed by the patient with a mirror after the product is placed and massaged by Dr. Trussler.
What should you avoid after Sculptra® injections?
Medications, herbs, and supplements that thin the blood or encourage bleeding will need to be avoided for at least one week following Sculptra® injections. So too should tobacco use be avoided during this time to help guard against unnecessary complications.
You may need to avoid strenuous exercise in the first week following treatment. Excessive UV exposure should also be avoided to help ensure the most pleasing results.
It is inadvisable to undergo additional cosmetic procedures for two to three weeks following Sculptra® injections.
After Care & Recovery
The results of a Sculptra® injections are not immediately visible after the procedure. Collagen stimulation will evolve into a gradual and natural volume improvement in the areas of injections. The results will be visible over a 4 week period as any swelling and bruising subside and the bodies own collagen is produced. The lower eyelids and upper cheek region may swell more than other areas, but this can be limited with the use of cooling ice packs. Dr. Trussler encourages the use of topical ice packs every 4 to 6 hours for the first 2 days to limit bruising and swelling. Massage after Sculptra® is encouraged in the areas of injections to help smooth the distribution of the product. Physical activity can be resumed the day after the injections.
Most patients see an improvement in the treatment areas and only need two treatments to achieve optimal results. Results may vary and touch up treatments may be required to maintain results, but Sculptra® can smooth, shape and fill the areas of injections with long lasting results.
Will my results look natural?
Sculptra® stimulates the body’s natural production of collagen and elastin, helping to add volume to the skin, eliminate fine lines and deep wrinkles, and produce a fuller and more youthful appearance. Because it relies on your body to achieve these results, treatment with Sculptra® tends to create a very natural look.
You can help improve, enhance, and maintain your results through proper aftercare and by adopting a solid at-home skin care routine that includes full-spectrum UV protection.