Is Doing About "90" Sculptra Patients in an Office, Enough Experience?

I am wondering if this is considered a lot of sculptra injections. I keep seeing how you want to get someone who really knows how to administer the sculpture injection technique properly or it can cause problems. If so, what kind of problems?

Doctor Answers 6

Sculptra experience

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Thank you for your question. I definitely understand your concern about experience with Sculptra. It is a very nuanced injectable filler and experience definitely makes a big difference as to the final outcome and results. I am a trainer for Sculptra, as well as the other injectable agents, and know firsthand that there is a wide variety of experience out there even among plastic surgeons and dermatologists. I suggest you go to a board-certified plastic surgeon or dermatologist who has a high volume of injectable fillers, and who does a high volume of sculptra in their practice.  
90 does sound like a good number.  You should ask what kind of problems your injector may have experienced. The two biggest aspects of getting a good Sculptra result is assessment (eg is there underlying asymmetry) and technique that allows for the desired volume restoration while avoiding nodule development.

Choosing an experienced Sculptra injector

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I think 90 patients is a reasonable number of cases for the physician to feel comfortable with the product.  Another important question is how long has the physician been injecting Sculptra.  Since the product stimulates collagen over time, it would be good to chose someone who has been injecting Sculptra over at least a 2 year period so that they know how the results develop and how long the product seems to last.  It takes a while for the physician to develop an artistic eye, know how much product a given patient will need, which faces are best suited for the product, etc. 

The main side effect that people worry about with Sculptra is the development of nodules.  These are usually very small bumps under the skin, which typically do not show.  Most go away by themselves over time.  Nodules are largely technique dependent and also can develop if the patient does not massage the product afterwards as instructed.

Kimberly Butterwick, MD
San Diego Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Sculptra experience

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Some doctors having done far fewer than 90 Sculptra patients may be better at getting good results than some who have injected more than 90 patients.  There is a lot of art sense and gentle-handedness that is important in delivering Sculptra.  In addition, the dilution of the product has increased during the last several years having learned that the initial concentration of the diluted vial was too high and that accounted for some of the earlier nodules (too concentrated particles delivered per unit area).  Nodules can occur in a delayed fashion from a local immune response but that is more rare than the earlier concenetrated nodule formation.

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

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Scultpra Injectors Experience

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Sculpra Aesthetic restricts its use to Dermatologists and Plastic Surgeons who have undergone their training course(s). In order to find a Dermatologist or Plastic Surgeon who has been through the official training with Scultpra Aesthetic, please visit the Sculptra Aesthetic website. At their website, you will be able to find a trained physician injector in your area through a search box. It sounds like your physician has had a lot of experience with this injectable, but feel free to locate them on the Sculptra Aesthetic website.  

All injectable fillers have the potential to cause bruising, discomfort, redness, swelling, bleeding, migration of product, infection, and allergic reactions, even in the hands of experienced injectors. Visible nodules from Sculptra Aesthetic injections are seen with decreased frequency since the adoption of improved dilution and reconstitution techniques.

90 injection sessions should certainly be enough experience

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Sculptra is restricted to those who have completed their training course. (This is unique among Injectables materials).

It also is NOT to be used in the lips or eyelids.

Aftercare should include massage for several days.

We have used Sculptra and Sculptra Aesthetic for years with no nodules or adverse events in many hundreds of injection sessions.

Dr. Mayl

Fort Lauderdale

Nathan Mayl, MD (retired)
Fort Lauderdale Plastic Surgeon

How to Choose a Sculptra Injector

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The use of Sculptra is now restricted by the company. Only skin specialists such as Dermatologists and Plastic Surgeons are allowed to inject Sculptra and only after appropriate training. Unfortunately, this has not always been the case so there are some Sculptra injectors who have not been trained. If your physician has injected 90 Sculptra patients, that indicates to me that the physician has a good deal of experience but you still need to see before and after pictures to make sure you like the results this physician has been achieving. As every face is different, good injection skills require a good deal of artistry. All injectable treatment procedures have similar risks which include inflammation, swelling, bruising, bleeding, and allergic reactions. Nodule formation with Sculptra has become uncommon due to better dilution techniques.


Mitchell Schwartz, MD
South Burlington Dermatologic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.