Ultherapy is a non-surgical alternative to facelift surgery.

Last modified: March 29, 2012

/ Skin

Mitchell Grasseschi, M.D., FACS
Plastic Surgeon

Ritacca Cosmetic Surgery & Medspa
and WhereismyDoctor.com Contributing Writer


Let’s face it, plastic surgery clinics and medical spas are all the rage and for very good reasons.  For every cosmetic concern, there is a surgical or non-surgical solution that will fit in the patients’ lifestyle.  Facelifts and neck lift surgeries have become very popular due to the amazing end result. 

A facelift, also known as a  rhytidectomy, is a facial plastic surgery procedure designed to remove wrinkles and decrease the visible signs of aging. Most facelift candidates share a desire to improve their facial appearance. They hope to remove wrinkles and excess skin in order to look younger and more attractive. Facelifts and other facial rejuvenation procedures, like Ultherapy, can help many patients to achieve these goals. Because a facelift is a serious medical procedure and comes with risks and a lengthy recovery period, it is not for everyone.


What is Ultherapy?


Ultherapy is a non-surgical ultrasound technology that enables plastic surgeons to direct sound waves not only into the skin but also deep under the skin. The Ultherapy technology gently heats the tissue to lift and tighten loose skin without cutting or disrupting the surface of the skin – this is what makes non-surgical skin tightening an attractive option for many patients.  SkinTyte and the new SopranoNIR are also great non-surgical options for skin tightening. These technologies use infrared technology to tighten skin and build long-lasting collagen.



A Good Candidate for Ultherapy


By no means is Ultherapy, SkinTyte or MAXtight replacements for a facelift or neck lift surgery, however, surgery is not for everyone, but non-surgical skin tightening treatments yield great results with minimal downtime.

A good candidate for Ultherapy has a few important traits. The following is a list of factors that can affect whether or not an individual is a good candidate for Ultherapy: skin elasticity, bone structure, patients’ expectations and overall health of the patient. 

The best candidates for  Ultherapy should have realistic expectations and follow the advice of their plastic surgeon. There is no optimal age for having Ultherapy performed. In fact, skin condition and texture are more important factors than age. After meeting with a plastic surgeon, the patient will usually be advised as to whether he or she is a good candidate for Ultherapy, or whether an alternate procedure might be preferable.



Preparing for Ultherapy

If you are unsure as to whether plastic surgery is right for you, then you might want to consider a non-surgical procedure like Ultherapy.  When undergoing any medical procedure, it is important to be fully educated and become aware of all options, risks and side effects.  This process begins with a consultation with a board-certified plastic surgeon. 



Ultherapy Procedure

Besides the visible effects of lifting and tightening, there is also an invisible result from Ultherapy with the creation of new collagen, which helps the skin maintain its youthfulness. Ultherapy typically calls for only one session; touch up treatments may be scheduled.  Patients enjoy some initial effects immediately following the procedure, but the ultimate lifting and tightening will take place over 2-3 months, as tired collagen is rejuvenated and replaced with new, youthful collagen.

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