I did one vial of sculptra one week ago. I'm still swollen when I smile. Is this normal?

i did one vial of scuptra diluted with water al,over the sidesof my face a week ago. this week my face is swollen when i smile. i am scared and not sure i wantto do a second vial in one month. can i use hyaluronic fillers such as voluma and juvederm in one month? i amafraidi will be stuck with a puffy smile and cheeks when collAgen builds... .

Doctor Answers 7

Sculptra Series

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It would be unusual for you to have long term swelling around the mouth with only one treatment. It is most likely temporary swelling due to the injection process. You could use Voluma in the cheeks and Juvederm around the mouth at any point. However one treatment with Sculptra is not optimal. I would ensure you to complete the series . Your injector may use less to the area and/or additional dilition when around the mouth.

Austin Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Swelling after Sculptra

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The one month point is when the changes inherent with Sculptra injections tend to settle down. I would continue to massage and allow the swelling to subside. In some cases, we ask patients to use SwellX tablets to help with the swelling and bruising.

Dr. Karamanoukian

Raffy Karamanoukian, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 95 reviews

Be patient with your results

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Thank you for your question. The swelling that you are experiencing is normal, no need to be concerned. It is always best to follow up with your doctor to be sure that you are healing properly.

Bruce E. Katz, MD
New York Dermatologic Surgeon
3.8 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

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Sculptra and post-op

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Sculptra is an amazing product that produces the body's own collagen and adds needed volume to the mid face and jowls. Sculptra is reconstituted with water so there may be some local swelling that disappears after a week to ten days. It then takes an additional four to six weeks for the body to produce its own collagen and you will see the results. For the best cosmetic results please consult a board certified dermatologist with experience with Sculptra injections. 


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Sculptra works to replace lost collagen in a series of treatments. On average three injection sessions are needed over a period of several months. What you see a week later is definitely not the final result and could be due to a normal swelling. Sculptra is reconstituted with sterile water and It could take up to a week for your body to reabsorb it. If these symptoms persist for another week, along with the swelling, I would recommend consulting with your doctor.

Joseph A. Eviatar, MD, FACS
New York Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 68 reviews

Puffy cheeks one week after Sculptra injection

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At one week after Sculptra you can expect to have some residual swelling from the procedure itself. If the Sculptra was injected diffusely throughout the cheek area I wouldn't expect that you would have too full of cheeks in the long term. You could consider waiting longer than one month before having your second Sculptra treatment until you see more of the results from the first treatment. Often I will wait 10-12 weeks between treatments, however that is something you should discuss with your doctor to decide together.

Edwin F. Williams, III, MD
Latham Facial Plastic Surgeon

Swollen 1 week after sculptra

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Your results are so dependent on the technique used. You say the sculptra was placed all over the sides of your face so that sounds like a more diffuse technique--which is best for Sculptra. Placement is key. So is integration with the volume status of the entire face, including the temples and the jawline, not just the cheeks.

To reassure you, one vial of sculptra has a very subtle result and would only be noticeable on a very young face with very little volume loss. But given what you're seeing now, I would recommend some caution before a second procedure if the entire vial is being put in the cheek area. It may be that you need it used even more diffusely to give a more natural and "accurate-to-your-youthful-self-look". Mostly, you need to have real comfort with the process and with your provider. These doubts are best handled face to face. Call your doctor and ask if he or she can take a look to be sure you both have the same ultimate outcome in mind.

Roberta Lucas, MD
White River Junction Dermatologic Surgeon

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.