Sculptra: What is it and who needs it?Sculptra is poly-L-lactic acid. It is a biodegradable filler that stimulates the patient’s own collagen over time. Sculptra is FDA approved for facial lipoatrophy (a loss of fat as a result of certain chronic diseases and from some medications for HIV disease). It is also FDA approved to improve facial lines and folds. In my practice, I consider Sculptra more of a dermal thickening device rather than a conventional filler. The treatment is performed every 4-8 weeks and several sessions are needed to achieve correction.
Unlike other fillers, there is little improvement after one session. In fact, it is likely the patient will be disappointed if they have not been counseled as to the time table for improvement. Sculptra is worth the wait, however. The unique niche for Sculptra is its ability to give a natural softening to those aging folds and shadows over 3-6 months. Once the correction is visible it lasts over 2 years, which is truly unique. Sculptra also firms the skin and gives a lifting effect to the jaw line and cheek bones.
After Sculptra, the skin texture is improved and feels firmer and there is more convexity to the facial shape. Sculptra is ideal for anyone who looks tired and gaunt either because of illness, weight loss, or genetics. It is a great way to make your face look fuller without gaining unwanted pounds on your body. Most Sculptra patients are between 35 and 65. Sculptra is mixed with lidocaine to decrease pain on injection. Most patients require 2-6 vials over 2-12 months. Dr Lupo has been a trainer for Sculptra since 2005. She was on the original advisory board in 2003 for this product prior to its FDA approval. Sculptra is injected differently from other injectables and it is very important to have Sculptra injected by someone well versed in its proper dilution and injection technique.
For additional information on Sculptra please read the following articles: