Can an esthetician perform SculpSure?

Is it safe for an esthetician to perform Sculpture so long as they are trained by the company? A medspa near me has this option - will the results be good if an esthetician do it as opposed to a DR? (Dr will not give the consult rather the esthetician will). What are the risks associated with Sculpture if it is preformed incorrectly?

Doctor Answers 16

Short answer: Yes

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Thanks for your question.  In my state (WA), the Department of Health (DOH) specifies what an Esthetician can and cannot do and what level of physician supervision is required.  Each state has its own rules, so the best bet is to go to your state's DOH website and see if that is spelled out.  In Washington, a "state licensed health care provider (MD, DO, ARNP, or PA) who has training and expertise" in the proper use of the device may "delegate" the treatment to an esthetician, but must be on-site for the initial treatment and must first evaluate the patient's candidacy for the treatment and review the informed consent documentation.  Subsequent treatments may be performed by the esthetician alone.  We follow the letter of the law in this regard and my esthetician does 98% of all ScupSure treatments with no mishaps.  If the company's protocols are followed, then SculpSure is a very low-risk device.  Theoretically, it could cause a burn, but that is quite rare and would only result from the protocols not being followed accurately or an improperly functioning device.  A doctor will not necessarily do a better job and is just as capable of making an error as an esthetician - the machine does the work, after all.  You should take a look at the DOH regulations for NY and if your medspa is not complying with those rules, report them and find another medspa, because if they skirt the rules on one thing, I would suspect that they may on other things too.  In my opinion, the states have these rules to protect patients, which is a valid concern.  When businesses blatantly disregard these rules, they deserve to have their licenses pulled.  They are cutting corners out of greed and disregarding patient safety.

Who can perform SculpSure?

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Who can perform SculpSure is going to vary by state. Assuming that the esthetician has completed the SculpSure training and there is a doctor overseeing, I don't think that there would be a problem. Best of luck.

Who can perform SculpSure

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Hi Nkp205 - 

This is a great question.  The qualifications of who can perform SculpSure varies by state.  However, during your consultation - be sure to ask who will be performing the procedure.  Do not be shy about asking for credentials and if there is a medical professional available for any concerns you have.  I had an NP perform my first SculpSure treatment and felt very comfortable.  However, in my clinic - I personally do them all.  

Linda Hodges, DO
Cedar Rapids Physician
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

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Trust your doctors opinion

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Thank you for your question.  If the doctor is putting their trust in the person performing your Sculpsure treatment, I would trust your doctor. Cynosure providers multiple trainings to professionals who will perform the procedures. The risks of performing Sculpsure incorrectly would be the placement of the applicators. During your treatment the provider raises your levels depending on the sensitivity of the patient. If you were feeling the constant heating and cooling throughout the treatment and the PACs were placed on the area of your concern, then you have nothing to worry about. Each state is different as to what services can be performed. Hope this helps. Dr Faraz

Who may perform SculpSure

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Thanks for your question. Yes, an esthetician may perform SculpSure so long as they are trained. Should you be uncomfortable with that, you can always express your concerns to the board certified dermatologist of your choice. Best, Dr. Katz

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

SculpSure Technicians

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Hi there, 

The answer to your question can vary based on the geographical locations of doctors in different countries or states. It's best to always have your consultation with a physician who can perform a body assessment for you to ensure that you are in fact a suitable candidate for the procedure and then use his/her discretion on whether or not you require supervision during your SculpSure treatment. 

Risks associated with SculpSure are minimal, one of the main concerns would be the risk of burning of the surface of the skin caused by improper contact between the applicators onto the skin during your treatment. 

It is best to consult with a board certified plastic surgeon who is experienced in non-invasive body contouring procedures to ensure you end up with pleasant results. 

Cory Torgerson, MD, PhD, FRCSC
Toronto Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 170 reviews

Yes the esthetician can do the treatment

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i would insist on seeing the plastic surgeon for the consult so that he can determine which is the best treatment for you. As a PS i can offer Sculpsure, Smartlipo and a Tummy tuck. if you just go to a spa, then you may not be getting the ideal treatment for you. 

good luck

david berman md


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Thank you for your question. Typically, the surgeon will always give the consultation to best understand the patient's needs. An aesthetician is allowed to perform SculpSure as long as they are trained by the company. The surgeon and aesthetician will work together to determine the correct setting levels and you will be monitored by a surgeon the entire time of your procedure. 

Because SculpSure is non-invasive and non-surgical, risk are practically non-existent for good candidates. There are no risks of skin discoloration, bleeding, or other complications. The only side effect is a little soreness post-treatment.

I suggest that you next consult in person with a board certified facial plastic surgeon.

Best wishes,

Ross A. Clevens, MD
Melbourne Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 124 reviews

Who Can Perform SculpSure?

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Thank you for your question. Yes, it is safe for anyone who is trained in how the machine operates to perform the treatment. Because the machine has 10 settings, the most important part is to ensure that you are receive adequate energy to treat the fat, but not excessive energy that the treatment may cause significant discomfort. Typically, for the first 4 minutes at least, whoever is performing the treatment is present, and is asking about your comfort level - you should feel a rolling heating and cooling (and it almost feels like a deep tissue massage). The only potential side effect is if the treatment is not at the appropriate setting you may not get as much fat destruction; if it's too high, you may have some lumps after the procedure that, in my experience, go away within 2-3 months (I tend to treat patients at a higher setting if tolerated to ensure the best results).

Anthony J. Taglienti, MD
Norristown Plastic Surgeon


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Your question is extremely important. It is important to have a certified person perform your treatment who has been trained well and has experience. First, every state has their own regulations. I would check with you state medical board to determine the appropriate qualifications. In my office, I always see the patient first and assess whether they are a candidate for this procedure. The nurse(RN) will then perform this 25 minute procedure.

Robert M. Wald, Jr., MD
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 20 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.