One inevitable aspect
of ageing is a change in the contours of
the face.This is due mainly to progressive loss of fat under the
skin and tissue laxity. Some people have a tendency to develop
a ‘gaunt’appearance, with hollow temples or sunken cheeks.
Tissue laxity and the relentless effects of gravity can also lead
to the formation of nasolabial lines, marionette lines and a
sagging jawline. If you are concerned about the way your face
has changed as you have grown older, Sculptra treatment
may be the answer you are looking for. If your upper face is
looking drawn or if everything has ‘gone South’ then Sculptra
treatment very probably is the answer.
Sculptra is a dermal implant that works in a totally different way to ordinary dermal fillers. Sculptra injection stimulates natural collagen production to ‘plump up’ the face, smoothing out lines and wrinkles. By restoring a more youthful ‘framework’ around the upper cheeks and temple areas, the lower part of the face also tends to regain a more youthful appearance. You can choose to have higher cheekbones or to improve the appearance of a sagging jawline, sunken cheeks or hollow temples. Sculptra treatment is also very helpful for the treatment of nasolabial lines and marionette lines and can even be used to improve the appearance of scars. No wonder Sculptra has been nicknamed the liquid face lift!
Sculptra itself is a synthetic and biodegradable polylactic acid preparation. Polylactic acid has been used medically for over thirty years as a suture material – a wealth of clinical experience suggests that it is non-toxic and very safe. Allergy testing is not required before using polylactic acid. Sculptra injection stimulates natural collagen production in the tissues over a period of several weeks and it is this that gives the desired cosmetic effect.
Typically, Sculptra treatment takes place over two or three sessions with several weeks between each session. It is not a ‘quick fix’. Indeed, the effects evolve gradually and a more complex course of treatment may even take a year or even longer. However, the effects are much longer lasting than ordinary dermal fillers – at least two to three years, sometimes even longer. Additional ‘top up’ treatments are needed only very occasionally – perhaps every three years or so.
Sculptra treatment begins with an examination and an in-depth discussion as to your wishes. Together we can reach agreement as to what can realistically be achieved in your particular circumstances. Initially, two treatment sessions are planned over a three month period. After initial Sculptra injection the visible effect actually disappears over the subsequent few days. This is completely to be expected and occurs as the injected liquid is absorbed and any tissue swelling subsides. The true therapeutic effect takes place over the coming weeks and months as the polylactic acid itself stimulates collagen production, thereby rebuilding the tissues. Your skin will also feel wonderful – there should be no lumpiness or coarseness at all if you follow the simple post-treatment guidelines.
Sculptra is well-named. The gradual rebuilding of the structure of the face is a process akin to sculpting – part technical, part artistry. It is also a process in which you can be fully involved – by discussing your wishes at each treatment session; you can achieve more closely the appearance you seek. Sculptra injection can be used not only to treat unwanted skin folds and hollows in the face but to correct facial asymmetry or even areas of scarring.
Sculptra treatment takes place typically during a 45 minute session. You will need to remove any make up and your skin will first be numbed using local anaesthetic cream. We have found that applying an ice pack to the skin is very helpful in minimizing any discomfort. Your skin will be cleansed with an antiseptic solution immediately before the injections.
After Sculptra treatment you will have a relaxing face massage as a special reward! In fact, massaging your face at home over the following three weeks is a crucial part in ensuring even deposition of Sculptra and the best possible results. We will show you exactly how to do this. You do not need to do anything else but wait for the final results to develop. You can apply makeup when any redness and swelling have settled down and otherwise carry on with your life as normal.
It is easy to add more Sculptra at a later stage but impossible to remove it, so the best practice is to under treat, rather than over treat. Remember that the initial effect will be short-lived, so don’t be disappointed when the initial results (which can be dramatic) fade over the next few days. Don’t worry – it will work! It just needs time. Typically people will start to compliment you on your appearance about two months after the initial treatment. They will also no doubt be wondering just why you look so good for your age!
Sculptra is generally well-tolerated and safe. Minor bleeding and bruising may occur at the injection suite, which generally resolves completely within a week. As with any invasive procedure, local infection is a possibility. Other complications (including allergic reactions) are rare. Small nodules in the skin (which can be felt but not seen) have occasionally been described.
Sculptra can be especially effective when used in conjunction with a course of enhanced laser skin rejuvenation. This can be carried out alongside your course of Sculptra treatment. If you would like any further information on Sculptra please do not hesitate to contact us for a free consultation.
Cost of Sculptra - £350 per vial.