Ultherapy - Portland, OR

I'm early 50s and had full face ultherapy...

I'm early 50s and had full face ultherapy (jaw/chin/eyes/brows) a month ago. At this point I'm optimistic. When I compare photos I think I see some changes, especially in the eye and brow area, although it is hard to tell as the before photos are much better quality (taken in the Dr's office) and the afters I took at home, in different lighting and much less clear.

I'll try to post again at 2 months, and at 3 will go back to the Dr for a follow-up, at which time I'll have another set of office photos taken and will post those as well. From what I've read, and from what my Dr has said, changes can continue for up to 6 months to a year. I hope that's true, will have to wait and see.

The procedure itself was painful, but not nearly as bad as I expected given what I had read. I took vicodin and it was totally manageable (I had fraxel several years ago and it was so much easier than that). I had some residual soreness esp around my brow and jaw (anywhere there is less fat is more intense) but that was very minor. I think this must vary by practitioner and Pt's pain threshhold. We are all different in this way.

I had no redness or swelling immediately following, but did have a tiny bit of bruising on one temple. Not very noticeable and hidden by my hair.

I did NOT see any change immediately following in tautness, firmness, improvement of skin tone etc. I should also add that my initial consult was with Dr. Key, but the Ulthera itself was administered by a tech. From what I understand, technique is the key factor in outcome, and the experience and skill of the person performing the procedure is the issue, whether MD, RN, or tech. I asked how long and how many times the practitioner had been doing THIS particular procedure and with what kind of outcome (like they will tell you the outcome is negative right, I know). There are also sites where you can check on your Dr's record: education/ complaints/ sanctions/ etc. These are well worth checking too.

I also had Pelleve done around my eyes and brows, and after I got home I realized that while I had paid to have Ulthera done there too, the nurse had neglected to do it! When I called they checked the record and saw I was right. This meant another trip in, and a different practitioner. Not very professional and could have been a costly omission had I not caught it. Other than that though, my experience was positive. Staff was knowledgable and pleasant. Dr. Key himself is a little... odd, but thorough and pleasant, and seems to know what he's talking about.

My overall assessment at this point is that if the improvements I'm seeing at this point continue for the next few months, the procedure will be worth it. If there is no further change, or very little, I would say for the price - no.


June 2014

Update: This was a TOTAL waste of money. Results? None visible.
Key Laser

these pictures are 2 months post treatment. i was told it would take 3 months+ to see full results.

4 out of 5 stars Overall rating
4 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
4 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
5 out of 5 stars Wait times
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Thank you for the photos. I think I see imrovement in both photos. Your neck line is definitely tighter. Also, look at the skin beneath your brows. It's tighter in the second photo. in the first photo the skin bows out a bit. In the second, it does not.
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I agree total l waste of money ! Now I will see a plastic surgeon.
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WHY in the world are doctors still promoting this, seemingly everywhere? It's quite obvious that it is a ridiculously overpriced and useless procedure. Do they think we are all billionaires and have nothing better to do with our money? NO -- they are trying to pay for their overpriced paperweight machines, and anyone who says otherwise needs to look at pubmed.com and sites where docs themselves admit this is a primarily useless procedure. RUDE of them to not be upfront and honest about this with potential clients. When I do someone's taxes I don't outright lie and say that they will get tons of money back, no doubt. In no profession have I seen such blatant dishonesty as this. Really, it's kind of shocking since I grew up thinking that doctors and other professionals deserved the utmost respect. They have truly ruined my respect for the profession.
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It IS sad that a few dishonest doctors can ruin the reputation of an entire profession. However, I have to disagree with you in terms of this procedure being useless. I have had wonderful results from a wonderful doctor. If you read my post, you will see that this procedure is ENTIRELY dependent upon the skill of the provider. Only a board-certified plastic surgeon or dermatologist should be allowed to administer this treatment, because the targeted area is as deep as the area manipulated during a facelift. People need to do their homework and find the best provider possible.
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I'm glad you got good results jersey - i am totally on board with the skill of the practitioner being the most important thing. dr key is a board certified dermatologist but rude and arrogant and just ...well... creepy. i don't want him near my face - which i happen to like actually - no matter what he has to say on the matter lol.
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It's so sad that there are so many rude, arrogant and nasty doctors out there...I have experienced my fair share of them recently!!! Your face is entirely too precious to entrust it to just anyone...good luck with whatever you decide!!!
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Hi, Kshine! I had Ultherapy from the same doctor as you. I actually quite liked the technician who performed my treatment. But I don't feel that the results in any way justified the price that I paid for the treatment. I think that if the treatments were more affordable, a series of three would probably actually show results.

A side note: the doctor was incredibly offensive and rude. I went in for a consult regarding options for Rosacea. I and ended up like that girl on Nip/Tuck with the lines all around her for what she needed to fix. I am late 30's with quite good skin despite the rosacea, but I ended up getting the Ulthera treatment based on the incredibly insulting consult I had with the doctor (which made me self-conscious about my appearance in a way I had never been before). : ( And then I saw no results. Overall, my experience with Dr. Key was horrible.
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I agree re the doctor. After telling me that part of what ulthera would do was rebuild collagen (which should have the effect of not just tightening but adding fullness) when i reported that i saw absolutely no siginifcant change (and the pics they took showed none either) he tried to tell me that if i had wanted fullness I should have gone with a filler. The fact that he tried to insist there were changes when we were looking at the photos right in front of us that indicated NONE was ridiculous but also incredibly arrogant and bullying. I finally got him to offer me some concession (but not covering anywhere near the cost of the procedure) and he acted as if he were doing me a huge favor and that I was the one trying to rip him off. I found him so off-putting that i have not actually redeemed the services he offered. frankly I was also concerned he would intentionally screw them up! I may still go in (it's been months since i called him on this), but am still not sure it's a good idea.

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it has been a year since i had the procedure and i think i will take more pics and post them. perhaps there has been improvement since then.
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i should add that the post-photos they took 2 (or 3?) months later really showed no improvement. The minor changes the post pics i took may have simply been due to different camera, angles and lighting.
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Hi, I had a consult with Dr Key and talked to a few others who have and he does *that* to everyone!! Not that it is right! It isn't. They should warn you before the consultation. They warned me, so I was expecting it. I will probably go back to DrKey, just because I know he is a good doctor. But he does make people feel uncomfortable. He pointed out a lot of parts that needed to be "fixed" that I wasn't even asking about. It's not great for the self esteem, he is very honest. I do appreciate the honesty on some level.
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Did you notice any loss of fat with the ultherapy? I'm 26 and have beginning stages of saggy skin and would like to tighten in up but not in return for loss of facial fat. Just wondering what your experience has/had been in that regard. Thanks!
- Julia
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Hi Julia,

No loss of fat. Again, I see no visible change. It would be nice to see a difference to justify the cost. Sadly, none. It was a waste of money for me.

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i'll be putting up some more in a day or so
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I looked at the photos again, and I still think the before and after of just the eyes looks reversed, but what do I know...maybe the lighting or the makeup was different? The other afters look a bit better, though.
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kshine ~ thank you so much for sharing your experience. I look forward to seeing the doctor's pics. I've been looking at adding this machine to my arsenal, but I want to be sure that it is worthwhile.

From everything I've seen, full results won't be realized until 4 to 6 months out. I hope you end up being pleased with your procedure!


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ha! true. on the other hand part of the beauty (from my perspective) is in it being subtle and gradual. i don't want to look as if i "just had something done".
i prefer people don't "notice" per se. i just want to look refreshed (and gradually more and more refreshed = P I'm still not sure on the "worth it" rating yet. i may eventually end up agreeing with you. i'll have new doc photos taken in a few weeks and will post those as well as any later ones if i think improvement continues.
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Thanks for your review and pictures! I think a procedure that costs over 3000 dollars should do more than just maybe possibly making a slight difference when viewed from a certain angle in certain lighting. The 83% worth it rate on realself is very misleading. Only 65 of the 106 reviews actually said it was worth it. About 30 said they weren't sure, but their vote didn't count in the percentage. For such an expensive procedure, I think it should.
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I totally agree 325092anon. Thank you.
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Thanks for pointing this out 325092anon - I didn't know about that part of the calculation !
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Just read your review and it's very forthright and honest. I am so happy for you that you see noticeable improvements but understand that you would like to see a bit more as the months progress to justify the cost. BTW, what is Pelleve? Where did you have it done on your face?
Thanks for sharing your experience.
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Just wanted to say that I did end up getting it done a few days after I posted here and I'm - so far - happy with the results. I want to give it a little more time before posting a complete review.

Thanks again for your review and photos.
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Thanks for your well-written review. I did think the before and after eye shots were reversed -- but it's possible that lighting and position made it difficult to compare. The last one does look better. I've had my jaw done by a notveryexperienced RN and I really don't see enough difference, but have not had the fortitude to look at pics of myself (I HATE how ugly I am in pics.) But in person, I don't see much difference on myself. Yours seems a bit better -- are you happy with the results now, and was it worth it?
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Also had it done and found it to be very painful at times (sting that feels like it is burning right through your skin) but I would rate it about 5/10. I happened to walk past a clinic and was intrigued by their advertising, so I walked in and on the spur of the moment decided to try it out. It cost just under USD 2500 for the full face and neck, which by no means is a bargain (although they want you to believe otherwise) Procedure seems fairly straight forward and after an hourly wage for the practitioner and cost of the machine, it no doubt still leaves a tidy profit for the clinic. As for the result, I had it done about 2 weeks ago and to-date can only see a moderate improvement. Time will tell, but I would say that the cost to value ratio is not great, however it is an improvement even if only marginally and should go some way to help "look" younger. I certainly would never consider plastic surgery, so this is about as far as I will go to cheat age :)
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thanks (and no no weight loss).
i'll keep updating astime passes.
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