Now The Wait Begins - Walnut Creek, CA

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Hi Everyone! Well after months of research,...

Hi Everyone!

Well after months of research, including reading all of these reviews, I committed to having Ultherapy done this afternoon. I will detail my experience and then (drumroll please) I WILL be posting pictures at the 3 month mark. I think reviews are not too useful without the photographic evidence. So here we go:

I am 38, and am having Ultherapy to see if it can raise my browns up a bit, raise the cheeks, and perhaps shrink the small wattle I have under my chin (which may be fat and therefore not budge-able with this procedure). It's too early for me to consider (or need) surgery, and a non-invasive procedure that could renew my collagen sounded like a good fit for me. Also, my age group appears to be one that responds most strongly to Ulthera. I expect anywhere from modest gains to undetectable difference (which would suck, of course). It seems as though the changes tend to be subtle, but it's been hard to get pictures showing this other than the ones on Ulthera's website. So I will be a guinea pig for you'all and we'll do some photo comparison once i've got my 3 month mark After shots.

I took 1 ativan, 1 vicodin, and 3 tylenol before the procedure. Halfway through we added another 1/2 of an ativan, which was perfect. I think the drugs were extremely helpful for dealing with the procedure. The transducer, which is a small handpiece with a series of holes along it's length, emits a series of short bursts of ultrasound energy. You can clearly feel the energy travel from each of the holes in the transducer and enter your skin. It ranges from pleasantly warm to breath-hissingly painful, depending on the location and intensity of the pulse. Each pulse is very short, which makes the experience feel much more manageable. Other reviews have described the procedure in detail, but here are some specific recommendations for pain management that I hope you'll find helpful:

*Take the meds
*Practice deep, slow breathing the entire session. Quick, shallow breathing is one cue to our body that we are worried or that something hurts, whereas with deep slow breathing we cant help but relax. Try breathing out for each pass of the transducer, or breathing in. You can also try counting - break out for at least 6 seconds, then in for 6.
*Have something to do with your hands. I tried squeezing a ball, but found that the tension in my hands just made everything in my body tighten up and the procedure hurt more. Later, stroking my hands against each other worked well, as it gave me some sensation other than the ones on my face to concentrate on.
*Have something to do with your mind. Once I started reciting poetry, my pain level dropped significantly. Recite something by memory, recall in as mich detail some happy event, or maybe even have earphones with a book on tape going. I'm thinking just music might not be distracting enough, but I didn't try it.
*Take short breaks and breath deeply to get your heart rate down. Rapid heart rate is another sign to your body that it should freak out and feel pain. The pain from the procedure is short lived - a quick break will let it die down.

Overall I found it manageable. Once you know what to expect it's a matter of breathing through the lines until they are ready to move onto the next session. The aesthetician offered to turn down the intensity as well when it got painful.

My aesthetician was great in that she continually let me know what she was doing, and counted down the lines so I had an idea of how much more was left to do. It's the uncertainly and poor communication that can turn run-of-the-mill discomfort into suffering, I've found.

Directly after the procedure, I look normal. I had a few small welts which went away within a few hours. I can see that my face is a tiny bit swollen - hence the reports from some folks who 'can see a change right away'. That's not new collagen forming yet, that's my dermis going "hey, what's all this ruckus?" I was cautioned against taking any bromelain / anti-inflamatories afterwards, as that could interfere with the desired healing process.

OK I'll update in a few :-)

So it's day 3. Outwardly I look normal except for...

So it's day 3. Outwardly I look normal except for a small bruise on one cheek and the kind of puffiness a late-night sushi dinner would cause. Inwardly I feel as though my face has been slapped repeatedly with a raw steak. The meat of my face is tight and sore, and I'm lacking some small amount of sensitivity in my chin area. It's not painful so much as noticeable. If this procedure doesn't work, it ain't for lack of trying - I definitely feel as through something large and weird has happened to my face.

I have had a chemical peel and several consultations with SkinSpirit and liked their friendly professionalism.

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
5 out of 5 stars Wait times
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