When researching the in-office cosmetic services to offer in my practice, I searched for non-invasive procedures to help with anti-aging around the face, neck and upper chest areas — places many of us find change somewhat disconcerting as we age. There are a number of therapies, all with varying degrees of effectiveness and longevity. But none impressed me more than Ultherapy, a unique treatment that uses ultrasound technology to target specific layers of the skin, delivering natural-looking results that actually improve over time.
Unlike other methods that freeze or zap cells, Ultherapy uses high energy-focused ultrasound to target specific layers within the tissues. This encourages the skin’s natural healing process and stimulates collagen production, in turn lifting and tightening the skin in the neck, brow, cheeks (jowls) or décolletage. Ultherapy is the only non-invasive FDA-approved treatment to tighten the skin, and offers remarkable results with virtually no downtime. Since there is nothing like a first-hand account, I recently asked a patient to describe her Ultherapy experience.
“I was told in no uncertain terms it would hurt,” she said. “So I expected the worst because I never thought I had a stellar pain threshold. But Dr. Goodman said she could mitigate the pain by applying some numbing cream to my cheeks, suggested pain medication, but also introduced the idea of nitrous oxide. I chose nitrous oxide while they were doing their magic so I could drive myself home.” This patient had never had what is referred to as “laughing gas” before and was dubious when we assured her that —while it would not make the pain disappear — it would make her not care about it as much. This idea baffled her until the day of the procedure. “I could not get my head about not caring about the prickly pain, but when inhaling the on-demand (self-administered) Pronox, I found I could endure almost anything and even engage in the conversations going on around me. If I felt too druggy, I’d pull the tube away. And if the pain felt deeper (such as near my jaw line) I would resume inhaling it. Once we were done I sat for a while to make sure the effects of it were gone, and I was good to go. I was amazed that the experience was actually kind of fun.”
As for recovery from the procedure, we prepare our clients with literature and tell them that the treated skin may be a bit swollen and sensitive to touch for a while. And while there can be some immediate smoothing and plumping, the effects would continue to improve over the next 2-3 months and can even improve up to 6 months afterward. If you’re wondering how popular this procedure is, Ultherapy won New Beauty’s “Best Non-surgical Skin Tightener” for the 8th time in a row, and recently won a first-time award from Harper’s Bazaar as “Best Pro Treatment for Face Firming”.
For more information, as well as before and after photos in addition to what we share here on our website, contact us at (415) 925-8555 for a free consultation.