I had ulthera done in Glendale, CA on July 27, 2011 for $3000. It is exactly one month today. So far, I do not see any change in my face. I'm beginning to wonder if it is worth the money I paid. I'll give it another month or so and see if I can recommend this to my friends. I also had my first botox injected in my forehead (20 units) for an additional $200. Botox shows immediate results. I am 56 years old, luckily I do not have much wrinkles so my friends think I should not have anything done just yet. My forehead lines bothered me the most. I figured, I'm doing it for me and nobody else and I thought if I pass the age of 65 and did not have anything done, I will not do it any more. So it is now or never! I figured this can't be too bad because it is non-invasive. Why not? I decided to be the guinea pig for my friends. LOL!
The clinic was very professional and a practicing nurse here in the USA but a medical doctor in the Philippines administered the treatment. He was very thorough and was very patient. He explained everything to me before & during the treatment.
The whole procedure lasted a total of 2 hours (1 hr prep & 1 hr treatment). The first thing they did was to apply topical anesthesia on my face while I listened to soothing music for 30 mins. Afterwards, they gave me 15 mg of oral Percoset for pain and allowed me to relax again while listening to music for another 30 mins. After a full hour of prep, the ulthera treatment started.
I have a high tolerance for pain so I thought this would be a piece of cake. NOT! I went through natural childbirth (no anesthesia) without screaming nor crying. So why couldn't I handle ulthera? He started on my chin and I heard a series of fast-beeping escalating sounds (about 6-7 of them) as he went over my skin with the machine. The last 2 to 3 beeps were the most intense & painful. In areas where there are more fatty tissues, it did not hurt, like the chin or cheeks. Areas where there are no fat, like near the forehead and around the sides of the eyes, it was painful & uncomfortable.
Sometimes I felt the heat from the treatment. I had to do my "lamaze" breathing technique to get through it and squeeze the rubber ball he gave me. He did not treat my forehead because that would be too painful and botox is best suited for that. He stopped short on the sides of my forehead just above my outer eyebrows. He did one side of my face first, then the other side. The ulthera treatment itself lasted a full hour. After ulthera, he injected 20 units of botox on my forehead. That didn't hurt at all.
I was so relieved when he told me it was over. Whew! I had to be honest with my best friend who has a low tolerance for pain that she couldn't do it without heavy sedation. There was a feeling of tightening around my face right after the procedure but it went back to normal after a couple of hours. I did not see an immediate improvement. Again, I did not have many facial wrinkles (except for my forehead lines) to begin with so it is difficult to see the result unless I study my face closer.
I thought everything went well with the procedures until 2 hours later. I started getting nauseous and I started throwing up violently. I called the doctor who told me I was having a reaction to the Percoset. I felt so sick. I threw up the whole night until I fell asleep. The following day, I was fine again. No more nausea and the vomiting was gone. Thank goodness! The doctor called to check up on me and I told him I was fine. I couldn't decide if the pain from the ulthera was worse than the after effect of the Percoset.
The following day, my face was bruised up. Bruises on my forehead from the botox and bruises on my chin, jaw and cheeks from the ulthera. The worst bruise was the one under my left cheek which lasted 2 weeks. I got funny stares from strangers and people I know asked me why the bruises on my face so I told them I had ulthera done.
So now, one month after...I do not see any visible improvement from the ulthera. The botox diminished my forehead lines and I'm pleased with that. I will wait another month to see if the ulthera works or not. My friends are eagerly waiting for this guinea pig.
Will I do it again? I'm inclined to say no unless I see a very noticeable improvement after a month from now. Will I go through the pain again? Hmmm, this might stop me from having another one. And botox? I say yes because it did not hurt and the result is immediate. I was told the effects of ulthera should last 1.5 years and botox about 6 months. I read that subsequent botox will make the result last longer. I have a girlfriend who has had numerous botox on her forehead and her has been lasting 1.5 years each time. Interesting!
Ulthera has been advertised as lunch time facelift. Don't believe it. Well, if you don't mind the pain and the bruises when you report back to work, I guess you can do it over a 2 hour lunch break.