For some, Ulthera® may be the answer to a non-invasive face or necklift. This unique system uses ultrasound energy to reach the damaged layers of the skin where sagging starts – including the deepest supporting layers that get tightened during a facelift – without the downtime caused by the redness, swelling, and bruising of other procedures.
The treatment, which takes less than 60 minutes, uses your body’s own regenerative response to gradually restore memory to the skin and underlying tissue support by stimulating new collagen production and contraction of existing collagen fibers. The result is firmer, tighter skin and a lifting effect. Here’s how it works; Similar to ultrasound procedures you may have had before (think pregnancy), your doctor places a smooth applicator on your skin that projects an image onto a screen. Your doctor plans where the energy will be directed, and the applicator sends low levels of focused sound waves that produce heat to whatever areas need lifting, for example the neck, the lower face, or the brow area. The ability of the Ulthera® technology to deliver a consistent temperature of heat energy deep to the skin is what causes the tissues to contract and tighten up.
According to New York City Plastic Surgeon Bryan G. Forley, M.D., “Ulthera is a very versatile treatment. I am able to customize the specific depths of energy delivery for each individual’s needs. You get contraction of the tissue at the time of treatment and the wound healing response that is initiated by the heating effect results in the formation of new collagen over time, so the results get better for up to 90 days and longer. The duration of results will vary but benefits can be seen for up to 2 years.”
Because the Ulthera system works without disrupting the outer layer of your skin, there is no recovery needed, and you can get back to work or normal activities immediately. If you think you need or want a second treatment session for additional improvement, Dr. Forley advises to wait about six months to see how much collagen remodeling you get.
Don’t expect to get a surgical facelift result from a single Ulthera treatment, but you can definitely get an improvement in skin tone and sagging with the added benefit of zero downtime. Off label uses for skin tightening currently being studied and trialed around the country include the decollete, upper arms, knees, and hands. A new, more superficial depth applicator is coming out soon that can be used to treat the fine wrinkles like crow’s feet around the eyes and smoker’s lines around the lips.
The cost of an Ulthera session is from $1,500 – 4,500, depending on the areas to be treated. To find a dermatologist or plastic surgeon offering Ultherapy near you, visit ultherapy.com