Frequently Asked Questions About Sculptra

What is Sculptra?

Sculptra -a non-surgical, non-invasive facelift- is an injectable volumising treatment that stimulates your own facial collagen production (that naturally breaks down with age) to smooth out lines and wrinkles and restore lost facial volume to give you a fuller, younger-looking face.

Sculptra is perfect for anyone wishing to improve the appearance of the skin and treat facial fat loss. Sculptra treatments usually involve between three and six sessions; once carried out, the results on average usually last for a period of up two to four years, but in some cases, touch-up treatments may be required to maintain the desired effect.

The treatment has been clinically proven to soften and smooth deep lines and wrinkles whilst also restoring that all-important volume to the face that we all lose with age. It can be used to treat deep lines and folds between the nose and mouth, marionette lines, sunken cheeks, lines and wrinkles in the cheeks or chin and deep scars.

Sculptra produces gradual and long-lasting results for an extremely natural looking and more youthful face.

Who can benefit from Sculptra?

Sculptra is a safe treatment suitable for both men and women who wish to get rid of lines and wrinkles that start appearing due to the ageing process. It can actually improve the patient’s skin appearance, by tightening and rejuvenating the face, giving it a more glowing and appealing look.

Sculptra was first approved and used in the US on patients who were suffering from HIV. As Sculptra can restore any loss that may have occurred in the face which is a condition known as lipoatrophy. This means that there has been a loss of fat tissue, which can occur from patients who are using anti-HIV medications.

The aesthetic medicine was then introduced to Sculptra. It is used on patients who feel they have had fat loss in their face. The product is injected in the patients face with a fine needle which then causes the body to produce collagen. The skin then thickens and the area is replenished giving the face a full and glowing look many patients desire.

The procedure is quick and simple and make up can be applied again immediately after treatment, however this does depend on the advice the doctor gives to the patient. However, the patient can continue with their daily routine instantly, although Dr Ayham Al-Ayoubi would advise his patients to avoid exercising for one to two days.

For the first few days, post treatment, the fullness may not be visible due to the water in the product, however after a couple of sessions and a few weeks the final result will begin to be clear.

The patient may experience minimal bruising with the possibility of moderate swelling; this is common and could last up to a week. Dr Ayham Al-Ayoubi recommends his patients to avoid medicines which increase the bleeding for one week prior to your treatment, unless required by your doctor.

Dr Ayham Al-Ayoubi did a study on more than 500 patients. The outcome of his study has shown that the results from Sculptra have lasted four to five years, with some patients needing top up treatment. Treatments on average consist of two to six sessions, which last roughly half an hour and they are usually four weeks apart.

Where can Sculptra be used?

Sculptra was originally used to restore and/or correct fat loss in the face for those who suffer with HIV. The fat loss usually occurs in the cheeks and around the patient’s eyes and temples. Sculptra was then approved to use on patients with wrinkles, who do not suffer from HIV. FDA approved the use of Sculptra for cosmetic use in the USA in 2009. Patients in Europe have been receiving Sculptra for over ten years and it is approved in many countries all over the world.

The treatment has an effect on the skin which encourages it to thicken from a collagen neo-synthesis, improves the look of any areas which may have folds or may look sunken and hides the loss of fat.

Areas such as the infra-orbital regions and the lateral brow are more advanced areas. Sculptra has also been used to treat conditions on the face such as acne, deep acne, scaring, varicella scars and dorsum of the hands.

The procedure is safe and the material that is injected into the skin is biocompatible. Sculptra is injected below the surface of the skin in the area where the patient has experienced fat loss. The skin will gradually start to thicken, improving the look of any folds or sunken areas the patient may have had.

Dr Ayham Al-Ayoubi states that Sculptra should not be used in the frown lines, the forehead, around the eyes, mouth and in the lips. However, some patients may have other areas on their face which the Doctor may want to avoid, this would all be discussed during the patients consultation.

Sculptra should not be used on patients that are allergic to any ingredients in the product or have a history of keloid formation or hypertrophic scaring. It should also not be injected if the patient has an active skin infection or inflammation in the area being treated.

Once the patient has had their consultation the doctor can provide them with a list of “Do’s” and “Don’ts”. However, if a patient is allergic to any of the ingredients, pregnant or nursing, Sculptra should not be used.

How does Sculptra work?

A consultation to determine the specific number of treatments and amount of Sculptra injected is conducted by our surgeon Dr Ayham Al-Ayoubi before any procedure begins.

Sculptra treatment requires make-up to be removed beforehand and the area to be treated with an antiseptic by a practitioner.

Sculptra works through a series of injections using a very fine needle, which immediately fills the depressed areas of the face caused by aging skin. The areas are then massaged fully to ensure the product is evenly distributed.

What are the possible side effects?

Dr Ayham Al-Ayoubi quoted: “In the right hands, if performed by a skilled cosmetic doctor with a proper knowledge of the product, this is a risk-free and effectual procedure. Eventually we have improved and optimised the technique in order to minimize problems”.

Although unlikely, post treatment side effects could include pain, redness, bruising, tenderness, discomfort or slight swelling. These only last a few hours and can be treated with an ice pack. In some cases the side effects can last up to two weeks, and it is important all clients massage the treated area regularly each day and avoid excessive sun or UV exposure.

Sculptra is a safe product to inject: clinical studies have shown that it is a safe and effective procedure. Besides, it has been found to easily be bearable with no major side effects reported.

The safety of injectable Sculptra in humans has been assessed in patients in investigator-initiated clinical studies. Sculptra has been found to be well tolerated with no serious adverse events reported.


What is the difference between Sculptra and Dermal Fillers?

Different from traditional dermal fillers, Sculptra adds volume to the face and fills grooves and hollows by stimulating the patient’s own collagen production over several months to bring back lost volume to the face. This can give some lift and help with wrinkles because many wrinkles are created by loss of volume itself.

Dermal fillers in general fill specific wrinkles and lines. These can also be used for cheek contouring and a “lift” effect. The choice between the fillers and Sculptra often comes down to the amount of volume replacement desired, your age, and maintenance issues.

In the world of fillers and volumisers, Sculptra is the only product that actually helps stimulating the already existing collagen present in everyone’s body. In fact, it is a one of a kind collagen refilling procedure that aims to get rid of unaesthetic folds slowly and subtly -but still on a constant basis-.

Unlike other dermal fillers, Sculptra doesn’t deliver immediate results: although the body begins to respond to Sculptra immediately, Sculptra doesn’t create a prompt visible outcome but rather stimulates subtly and gradually the thickening of fibrous tissue or collagen, both naturally present in the body, to deliver a whole new fully definition to the face.

This new volume is therefore your own body at work making new collagen. It feels plump and smooth and appears very natural. Hence, the way Sculptra works allows results to endure much longer than any other injectable product.

A study led by Dr Ayham Al-Ayoubi has proved that the results of Sculptra treatment are long lasting: in fact, more than 500 of our patients have demonstrated that the results of Sculptra can last up four to five years. The procedure consists on a course of two to six sessions lasting no more than thirty minutes each, while the time in between each treatment varies around 4 weeks.

So if you are considering having traditional fillers or Sculptra, you may wish to think that the latter is very cost effective compared to the former which will require you to have injections on a regular basis every six months. Besides, with Sculptra, the need for further treatments may decrease after the first session.