The skin is the body’s largest organ, and time is the number-one factor that ages it. Here at Prizant Dermatology in Pittsburgh, PA, we make it our personal goal to get to know each of our unique patients to better understand their individual needs. You deserve to love your skin and experience it at its best. That’s why we offer a full list of cosmetic, medical, and even surgical dermatology such as Sculptra treatments.
Feeling like your skin isn’t what it used to be? You aren’t the only one. Although we can’t stop the natural process of aging, we can do things to slow down the clock. That’s what our practice is all about: giving our patients their youth back and encouraging their confidence to skyrocket. Rather than spending all your spare money on expensive plastic surgeries, you deserve a safe, affordable way to achieve your desired results. That’s where we come in.
So, What Is Sculptra?
Simply put, it’s a dermal filler that has been around for over 20 years. Dermal fillers are comparable to Botox but are preferred by many. This FDA-approved treatment is normally used to target wrinkles nowadays. It was once originally used to treat lipoatrophy in those with HIV. When it was used for this purpose, it targeted facial folds, sunken cheeks, and indentations caused by fat loss from lipoatrophy. Sculptra Aesthetic was created years later for treating facial wrinkles/folds cosmetically.
The active ingredient in Sculptra that produces desired results is a collagen stimulator called poly-L-lactic acid, or PLLA. This is the main focus because collagen is one of the most important proteins in our bodies. It is responsible primarily for the skin’s elasticity among other things. A lack of ample collagen production is what causes wrinkles and fine lines. This treatment option is so revered mainly because it can produce long-lasting results that bring out the patient’s natural beauty.
What’s Poly-L-Lactic Acid?
This key ingredient is synthetic lactic acid. It is most commonly found in dissolving surgical stitches and in the materials used for implants of soft tissue. It is able to be directly injected as it is a hyaluronic acid filler. Hyaluronic acid already naturally occurs in the body and is found primarily in the skin. When extra amounts are injected, it promotes better hydration for the skin and encourages faster skin cell regeneration. This is what makes your skin shine.
Who Would Benefit From This Treatment?
Anyone who wants to slow down the aging clock and look as youthful as they feel is encouraged to give this treatment a try. Since it works by getting deep within the patient’s dermis, it targets signs of aging at the source. This makes it ideal for any folds or wrinkles, deep or shallow. Rather than changing things drastically, this treatment is all about a gradual, natural improvement to the patient’s facial skin. It also produces satisfyingly long-lasting results.
A patient in their 30s who wants to slow down the aging process and get ahead of deep wrinkles would benefit greatly. A patient in their 60s wanting to reverse aging and restore their skin to its original elasticity would benefit just as significantly. Patients in any age range will get natural results. The secret to this is encouraging the body’s natural collagen-producing process to expedite. Your body does all the work, we just motivate it with the right tools!
Who Would Not Be an Ideal Candidate?
Since the active ingredient, poly-L-lactic acid, is biocompatible it contains no human/animal byproducts or bacteria. This means that even for those prone to allergies, there will be nothing to worry about. Our treatment is entirely hypoallergenic. Those who are interested in seeing instantaneous results from just one session would not be an ideal candidate and should consider more invasive or surgical options. Someone with autoimmune disorders should also exercise caution when considering this treatment option.
Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding will also not be ideal, as well as teens younger than 18. It’s advised that, if you have a temporary skin condition or outbreak, wait until it subsides before going in for treatment. If you are often prone to hypertrophic scarring or keloids, your body is already producing extra collagen and this treatment may not be beneficial. Be sure to discuss with our experts if you’re regularly taking blood thinners or pain/anti-inflammatory medications.
How Sculptra Works
By injecting directly into the targeted area, this treatment will diminish the appearance of wrinkles thanks to the main ingredient, PLLA. Since it is a collagen stimulator, it encourages your skin to increase its production for a naturally youthful look. Because it works naturally, the improvements will appear gradually over a long period of time.
The Treatment Session
For your initial consultation with us, we will go over your medical history as well as any medications or supplements you’re taking regularly. For your first treatment, one of our experts will map out the target areas and clean them before injection. Though discomfort is not typically felt, the expert may offer a topical anesthetic to numb the area if the patient desires.
The injection itself takes the form of multiple smaller shots directly on the needed area. The entire session from start to finish will not last more than an hour at maximum.
What Areas Can Be Targeted?
Normally this treatment is focused on the facial area. Lines around the chin and cheeks, smile lines, crow’s feet, and marionette lines from the lips to the chin can all be fixed with our treatment. Other patients focus on the cheekbones to fill out their faces and produce a more youthful look. This particular treatment is recommended if the patient has hollowed cheeks from aging or weight loss.
We see most of our patients for areas focused on the cheeks, temples, chin, jawline, and chest. The main focus is usually on fine lines, wrinkles, and loose skin or folds in these areas.
Less Common Targets
There are also off-script uses patients can take advantage of that aren’t as common. Some of these include fixing cellulite, removing wrinkles in the elbows, knees, or chest, and even lifting or augmenting the buttocks. Some patients seek out this treatment to bulk up their muscles naturally. Popular target areas for this include the thighs and glutes. The pectorals are also commonly targeted, as are the biceps and triceps. That’s why this treatment is great for everyone!
How Should I Prepare Beforehand?
Because this treatment is minimally invasive, there are no major preparations you need to take before receiving it. Our experts may ask you to avoid taking anti-inflammatory or pain-killing pills such as ibuprofen or aspirin for a few days before your scheduled appointment. This is to ensure there is no elevated risk of bleeding.
We also recommend making sure you are properly hydrated before and after treatment. A big part of it relies on encouraging hydration in the skin through increased collagen production. Making sure your body is hydrated will also help your skin cells regenerate faster and stronger.
What Should I Be Expecting Afterward?
Our patients usually have no trouble returning to their normal daily lives directly after treatment. You could even schedule an appointment and then return to work afterward. Since the skin in the targeted areas may be sensitive due to the injection, there are a few things you can do to increase your comfort and recovery time.
Applying a cold pack to the targeted area for a few minutes is best done within the first day of your treatment. For the following few days, we recommend gently massaging the area for a few minutes a few times a day. It is very important to avoid too much sunlight and skip the tanning bed for a while. You can resume these activities once any redness or sensitivity goes down.
How Many Sessions Should I Schedule?
It takes a few weeks to see the full extent of your results, so wait a while before deciding. The average patient sees us for three sessions over a span of three or four months. Your results can last up to two years.
How Can I Find a Trustworthy Provider?
You’re in the perfect place for it! Our mission statement here is to provide professional service of the highest quality. We offer that personalized touch you won’t find elsewhere. We pride ourselves on being a full-service medical, surgical, and cosmetic dermatology practice. We get to know our patients personally to better determine the best course of action for every individual who comes to see us. Once you meet our experts you’ll know you’re in good hands.
Time To Love Your Skin Again
You deserve to be confident in your appearance. Schedule your Sculptra consultation with us at Prizant Dermatology in Pittsburgh, PA today to learn more and meet our experts. Check out our website, and see us without leaving your home thanks to our DermatologistOnCall virtual waiting room!