Please Clarify Sculptra Treatment Terminology Re: Vials/Syringes/Sessions?

There are a lot of inconsistent terms surrounding Sculptra treatment and I'm hoping someone can clarify. Sculptra costs $800 per vial in my area. If 3-5 treatment sessions are needed, is that 3-5 vials of Sculptra? So many words are used interchangeably in different publications. What does a treatment session consist of? Does one vial cover more than one session? With prices for vials, syringes and sessions, I'm confused. Thanks so much!

Doctor Answers 12

Sculptra terminology

Sculptra treatments are individualized for each patient.  In regards to the number of sessions needed, there are some people that may only need two sessions and there are some that may need six or more.  The severity of the volume loss before treatment normally influences how many treatments are needed and how much Sculptra is needed for each treatment session.  Some people may only need 1 vial per session and some that have a larger area to treat may need 2 vials per session.  It's also not uncommon that some people who initially need 2 vials in a session may only need 1 vial in a session in the later treatments.   

San Francisco Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 18 reviews


Sculptra is a Poly-L Lactic acid bead that stimulates fibroblasts in the skin to produce collagen and elastin. Sculptra is packaged in a vial and generally one or two vials are used per treatment session depending on the level of volume correction desired. Follow-up appointments can be made 4-6 weeks after treatment where the need for additional vials can be addressed. I would suggest meeting with a board-certified dermatologist to discuss how many vials you will need to achieve desired results.

Lisa Airan, MD
New York Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

Sculptra Treatment Terminology

Thank you for your question. One vial, one treatment. It should be used up at the time of injecting. Sculptra is provided dry and we re-constitute it with saline 48 hours prior to injecting.  Typically, fees are per vial, and 1 vial per decade of life is a common formula used. I hope this helps!

Sonia Badreshia-Bansal, MD
Bay Area Dermatologist
3.9 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Sculptra - Clarification of Vials/Syringes/Amounts used

I totally understand your question.  Sculptra are shipped by the kit.  A kit consists of two vials.  Depending on the need of the patient, one vial or two vials may be injected at each session.  Treatment is individualized dependent upon the amount of volume loss.  It is not unusual to use two vials at each treatment.  The treatments are usually 4-6 weeks apart.  Two to three treatments are necessary.  Results will be evident approximately 4 months after the last injection.  $800, is for one vial.  You may inquire about discounts or rebates when multiple vials are purchased.  Sculptra is a fabulous product.  Remember to massage 5 times a day, for 5 minutes for 5 days following each treatment. 

I hope that I have been of assistance to you.

Thank you.

Nana N. Mizuguchi, MD, FACS
Louisville Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 51 reviews

Sculptra Sessions

Sculptra is sold by most physicians as treatment vials.  In general, one or two vials are injected during each treatment session.   The number of sessions performed is dependent on the amount of volume restoration desired, which needs to be individualized.  The treatment sessions are typically performed in 6-8 week intervals.

Craig Mezrow, MS, MD, FACS
Philadelphia Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Effectiveness of Sculptra

A rule of thumb that I like to use with patients is that in general you will need 1 vial per decade.  So a 50 year old woman will usually need 5 vials.   Most of my patients prefer to have 2 vials the first time, 2 the second and 1 the third.  The injection of Sculptra is not an exact science rather an estimate of the amount of product needed to produce a desired result.  I have also found that there is a relationship between the degree of soreness when massaging and effectiveness.  The sorer it gets the more inflammation and the better the effectiveness.  

Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Sculptra Treatment Terminology

Sculptra is best used to replace overall facial volume loss. To see the best results possible, multiple treatments are usually needed.

Kimberly Butterwick, MD
San Diego Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 19 reviews


For Sculptra treatments, often times a patient will need a series of treatment sessions for optimal results.  Depending on how much volume is needed, 2-3 treatment sessions may be necessary.  At each treatment session, 1-2 vials may be used.  

Sam Naficy, MD, FACS
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 222 reviews

Sculptra Terminology

It's normal for each vial of Sculptra to cost between $800-1000. A treatment session can be anywhere from 1-2 viles depending on your treatment plan. You should clarify with your provider how many viles total.

Babak Azizzadeh, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Sculptra and vials per session

Sculptra ranges in price from $800 to $1,000 per vial depending on what area you live in and the skill and experience of the injector.  Usually 2 to 3 sessions are needed depending on the volume being filled.  Most patients require 1 to 2 vials per session so the price of getting the volume filled can be anywhere from $3,000 on up.  However, Sculptra will last for years and as long as artistically and properly performed will look amazing and be much less expensive than surgery or injectables that dissolve in six months.  Please find an experienced dermatologist who knows a lot about cosmetic dermatology for your facial injections.

Michele S. Green, MD
New York Dermatologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 79 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.