Is There a Relationship Between the Amount of Energy Used or the Length of the Ultherapy Procedure and the Results Seen?

If more energy is used during a treatment is that patient more likely to see positive changes after the procedure? If so, is there a limit where the maximum amount of change is reached and the rest is just excess energy used and time spent on the treatment? Would there be any benefit to using a lesser dose of energy than that amount?

Doctor Answers 8

How to maximize Ultherapy results

There are several variables that contribute to optimal results from Ulthera, which uses focused ultrasound energy to stimulate collagen remodeling for facial lifting. The most important is the total amount of energy delivered, and this dose is higher than what is was originally believed to be. There is definitely a point of diminishing returns and it is better to repeat the treatment after a few months that to do too much in one setting.

Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 52 reviews

Ulthera Energy- Does it make a difference?

There are three variations in treatment that can be tailored to the patients needs.  The first is the depth of treatment.  There are currently three depths of treatment, 1.5, 3.0 and 4.5 mm.   The more shallow 1.5 mm depth is for more superficial treatment and the other two are used for lifting and tightening. The second variation is the density of the treatment which corresponds to the number of passes that are performed at each depth.  Density of treatment has increased as it has been shown that more micro injury for collagen stimulation is more effective in certain cases for lifting and tightening especially in patients with more advanced aging changes.  The final variation is the energy level.  This has generally been set at the highest setting but could be reduced if not tolerated by the patient.  Recent studies have shown that lowering the energy level has not had a negative impact on the results.  As a result, the procedure can be better tolerated with less discomfort while still achieving similar outcomes.  Hope this is helpful.

Pamela Henderson, MD
Phoenix Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Number of Ulthera "lines" or energy used is related to results

Ulthera "lines" or energy per pulse is correlated positively to the amount of collagen stimulation produced.  The Ultherapy procedure can be customized so that it can be customized to address facial asymmetry, i.e. if the tail of the brow is lower on one side, additional pulses are delivered.  Ultimately the application of microfocused Ultrasound, first to the deeper facial layers (SMAS) and then the deeper skin is based on the clinician's judgment and the patient's anatomy.  It's similar to pharmacology in which greater amounts of drugs need to be administered for bigger individuals.  The dose:response curve is also dependent on on a variety of other factors, which should be assessed by an Ultherapy provider.  Good luck. 

Lavinia K. Chong, MD
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 58 reviews

Ultherapy settings

There are "standard" recommendations for the # of lines of treatment and enrgy settings. 

Ultherapy uses ultrasound energy in a focused manner and obvioulsy, the higher the intensity of energy (power/sq area), the higher the expected energy delivered to the tissue. Since energy is related to stimulation of collagen according to Ultherapy clinical trials, the higher the settings, the more energy that is attnuated in the form of tissue absorption (ultrasound physics principle) and thus more collagen deposition noted at 6 months follow-up. 

the higher the # of lines of treatment, the larger the total energy delivered to the face or neck with Ultherapy treatment.

I have ultrasound credentials from ARDMS for RVT and RPVI. 

Read my Ultherapy ebook. 

Hratch Karamanoukian, MD, FACS
Buffalo Phlebologist
4.8 out of 5 stars 41 reviews

Ultherapy energy for lifting facial features

I do tend to apply lots of energy per lines per treatment and I  do believe this is an extremely efficient way of approaching their financial obligations for their treatment. If one finds a less expensive Ultherapy, but the number of lines of treatment are not the same, then you've not compared similar technques. The end result may very well depend on the the number of lines of therapy, similar to Thermage.

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 37 reviews

More Energy Does Not Mean Better Result

More energy does not necessarily mean a better result. High energy Ultherapy treatments are more painful and longer.  Recent studies have shown that you can get a great result with less energy making it less painful and shorter.  More studies need to be done, but the trend is for less energy, not more.

Robert F. Centeno, MD, FACS
Columbus Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 77 reviews

Results From Ulthera

An in-house study performed by the company showed that there was not statistically significant difference in results when the same amount of lines were delivered on both sides of the face (using both the 4.5 mm depth probe and the 3mm depth probe), but one side received 2 energy settings less than the other side which received the maximum energy setting.  There was also no difference in adverse events noted between both sides. It is believed that ultrasound energy may not be like other forms of energy, in that more energy equals better results.

Sabrina Fabi, MD
San Diego Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 84 reviews

Mapping Ultherapy Treatment for best results

The treatment time, energies and tips used are based on what you want to accomplish. Each Ultherapy Lift can be completely customized. Under-treating is not advised since the treatment is fairly costly and most people want as much improvement as possible.

Ulthera recently made some changes to the treatment energy delivery to make the treatment more comfortable while still obtaining maximum outcomes.

Bear in mind that your age has an impact on the extent of the procedure results. Why is this? Ultherapy works by causing a collagen response and the "older" we are, the slower our collagen responds.

You could gain a lot of personally relevant information by visiting an Ultherapy Lift practice for a consultation to discuss your specific concerns.

Rebecca Fitzgerald, MD
Los Angeles Dermatologic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 21 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.