Ultherapy is a type of non-surgical cosmetic procedure that is designed to diminish many of the most common signs of aging, such as fine lines, wrinkles, and sagging skin. It works deep below the surface of the skin without damaging the outer layer, and it firms, tightens, and lifts the skin using medical ultrasound technology.

How does Ultherapy work?

Ultherapy works by utilizing ultrasound technology. The device used during the procedure creates images of the inner layers of the skin and projects heat into these layers. The skin responds to this heat by creating new collagen, which works to tighten and firm the skin above.

What areas of the body does Ultherapy treat?

Ultherapy is used to treat the face and upper neck. It can safely be used to treat the entire area, or it can be used in specific regions such as the forehead, upper face, lower face, jaw line, or neck.

What are the advantages of Ultherapy over other similar treatments?

Unlike many other nonsurgical cosmetic treatments, Ultherapy uses ultrasound technology to create images of and treat the skin. This allows the doctor to see deep below the skin prior to treating it, which leads to increased precision and safer, more desirable results.

Who is a candidate for Ultherapy?

Most healthy adults whose skin has started to sag or feel less firm are good candidates for Ultherapy. Your doctor will be able to determine whether or not you are a good candidate for the procedure.

How is Ultherapy performed?

Ultherapy is performed using a smooth handheld device that the doctor will hold against your skin. This device captures an image of the deep layers of your skin and projects it on a screen. The doctor performing the procedure will look at this image to determine exactly where treatment is required. Using the same handheld device, low levels of focused heat are delivered to the area that needs treatment. Patients do not require anesthesia during the procedure, and many patients report feeling mild sensations of prickling or warmth beneath the skin when the ultrasound energy is delivered into the tissue. The whole procedure takes roughly thirty minutes, and most patients require only one session to obtain their desired results.

What is the recovery like?

Following treatment with Ultherapy, patients are able to immediately resume their normal daily activities. There are no special measures that must be taken during recovery. Some patients may experience mild redness, but this should disappear within a matter of hours. Slight tenderness under the areas treated is also normal.

What will the results be like?

The results of Ultherapy build during two to three months following the procedure. Trials have shown that nine out of ten patients experienced noticeable lifting in the brow line which made the eyes look more open. Patients also tend to experience firmer, tighter skin with a smoother texture and more even skin color. These results typically last for roughly ten months to one year, but since the aging process continues, patients may require touch-up procedures annually in order to maintain the full results.

What are the risks?

Ultherapy is a safe procedure that utilizes the same type of ultrasound technology that has been used in medical imaging for decades. For most people, it causes no side effects, but some may experience mild redness or soreness in the areas treated. These problems are generally mild and clear up on their own. In very rare cases, some people have also experienced temporary swelling or bruising.

Is Ultherapy FDA approved for use in the U.S.?

Yes, Ultherapy has been approved by the FDA for use in the United States.

Is Ultherapy covered by insurance companies?

Cosmetic procedures such as Ultherapy typically are not covered by insurance companies. If paying for your procedure is a problem, you may be able to qualify for financing through your medical practitioner or an outside lender.

Disclaimer: This information is intended only as an introduction to this procedure. This information should not be used to determine whether you will have the procedure performed nor does it guarantee results of your elective surgery. Further details regarding surgical standards and procedures should be discussed with your physician.

By Dermanetwork.org Staff
Updated: May 13, 2010

Have specific questions?

All Article Categories

Before & After Photos

Suggested Doctors

Recently Asked Questions