Sculptra vs. Radiesse
Oct 24, 2011
Hi Dr. Pierone:
I have been getting Sculptra injections once a year after having six sessions initially for facial wasting. It has worked great for me, it totally took away the facial wasting look and in fact I think it has actually now made me look younger than my age. I had no problems with it at all as others have complained about (e.g., lumps). However my doctor has just informed me that I am not due, through the Sculptra program, for any further vials for 2 more years. I am a bit nervous to wait 2 years for a "tune up" should those two years take away all the work that has been accomplished. They told me they also have Radiesse and they also offer a free/inexpensive program for people with facial wasting within certain income limits. What do you know about Radiesse? How well does it work and how long does it last? Complication? And is it okay to go back and forth between Sculptra and Radiesse given the restrictions of the programs? Thanks!
Response from Dr. Pierone
Sculptra has reduced the amount of free product for the patient assistance programs and many of our patients are in a similar situation to yours. After the initial 12 vials of Sculptra for correction of facial lipoatrophy, the limit is 2 vials per two years.
We have been using Radiesse as an alternative for patients who are not able to obtain Sculptra. Radiesse is approved for lipoatrophy and is certainly effective. Radiesse works right away, without the lag in restoration in facial volume that occurs with Sculptra. It lasts about a year, but there is quite a bit of variation in duration of effect from person to person. It does stimulate collagen production so retreatment often requires fewer syringes to regain full correction.
It is ok to go back and forth between the products. It is also ok to use them together in the same treatment. We often treat severe lipoatrophy with a combination of Radiesse and Sculptra. This produces immediate results from the Radiesse and longer benefit from Sculptra. Here is a link to a video of this treatment.
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