I had full face and neck done in mid-March and spent $4,400, which was presented as a discount price. I had an initial consultation for information and pricing. After deciding to have the ultherapy, I returned for a mandatory consult with a nurse-esthetician for a medical review and pre-procedure advising. A third brief visit was for pre-procedure pictures.
I was informed that some people obtain a valium and/or prescription pain pills to take just prior to the procedure but that I could not drive myself home afterwards if they were used. I was also told that topical numbing cream and numbing injections were not effective on pain related to the ultherapy procedure and so the medspa I was using does not offer them. I was advised to take three regular Tylenol (acetomiaphin) and 800 mgs of ibuprofen an hour before the procedure, which I did.
For my procedure the maximum number of lines were used, which relates to the spacing. I’m sure if I had asked for a less aggressive treatment that they would have obliged, but they wanted to ensure optimal results and maximum satisfaction, to which I said, “Go for it!” The pain was moderate to intense throughout the whole procedure, which lasted 1.5 hours. I got through it in part by concentrating on regulating my breathing. They performed two passes on all areas, the first being the deeper and more painful. The pain was most intense on the neck and the area under the jaw. Also, near my hairline above the brow she got a little close to a nerve which hurt for a moment. I had been warned of this possibility before she started the treatment. From a pain perspective, being aware of what to expect makes it slightly more tolerable; I was mentally prepared for it. Describing the feeling is a challenge, it is like a deep, intense, pins and needles electrical shocking sensation.
I am subject to migraine headaches so as a precaution I went home and rested after the procedure and I took additional ibuprofen about six hours post-procedure. I was told when I asked about the risk of the ultherapy sparking a migraine that they had never had a patient tell them that the procedure caused a headache. I did not get a migraine, but would suggest that anyone who is subject to migraines take some precautions before and/or after having the procedure.
I can’t say that there were any immediate results from the ultherapy. I believe that in the first day or two that any plumping or lifting that some people notice is likely due to mild swelling. I didn’t notice any change to the appearance of my face. I used Arnica gel for the first four days to help prevent some of the bruising and swelling. On day 1-2 I felt very numb and tingly, most particularly on the jaw line, lower face, and immediately under. On day 3 I began having slight yellowing and bruising on the lower face and a small bruise under one eye. The bruising and yellowing faded away after 7-8 days.
The first two weeks my face remained very tender and I occasionally had twinges of pain and the weird tingling feeling continued on the lower half of my face. It is somewhat similar to the sensation of novacaine wearing off after a dental procedure. This began to fade very gradually over the next several weeks. The tingling pins and needles was almost entirely gone by the fourth week after ultherapy. The tenderness and occasional twinges of pain have lingered a little longer but were much better by about six weeks post-procedure. Even at 90 days, I still felt a tiny bit sore right on my jawbone if I touch or massage it too hard.
About the actual results, for me, any improvement has been very gradual. It was so gradual, in fact, that my medspa generously gave me three jawline treatments using Skintyte (Sciton) in June and July plus a syringe of Juvederm when I indicated that I was concerned about the slow progress prior to my daughter’s wedding which was my impetus for the Ultherapy.
My conclusion, nine months out, is that Ultherapy is worth it for the lower face. For my upper face, I can’t say that I noticed any improvement at all, in fact, for about 7-8 weeks my forehead actually looked and felt lumpy (from the collagen generating unevenly, I believe.) I counted on my eyes looking bigger and brighter (they run the machine very close under your eye) but I saw no change there either. I had my neck done because I am developing horizontal lines and wanted general tightening and my neck lines and loose skin are improved but I can’t be sure if this is a result of the Ultherapy or SkinTyte (or both). I still have some slackness under my chin but to me the improvement in this area is noticeable and my jawline is more defined.