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Ultherapy vs. Facelift: The Core Differences Between the Two Procedures

Posted by December 17th, 2019 in News

In recent years, the revolutionary Ultherapy treatment has proven its effectiveness in tightening and toning aging skin in the facial, neck, and upper chest/decolletage areas. For decades, however, we’ve relied on facelift surgery for our de-aging needs, and the procedure remains popular today.

Both Ultherapy and facelift surgery can make you look younger, but how do you know which procedure is the right one for you? To answer that question, we must delve into their differences, which we’ll discuss below.


The non-surgical Ultherapy skin tightening procedure involves absolutely no cutting. Using focused sound waves, this treatment instead targets subdermal tissue layers to promote collagen production. This is what rejuvenates your skin for a fresher, more radiant look.

In contrast, the facelift is a surgical procedure that entails the use of a surgical knife to cut away excess skin and sutured back again. Underlying tissues are often tightened, after which the skin is draped again over the area receiving treatment, such as the face and/or neck.


Even though Ulthera is non-surgical, it treats the deepest of the skin to provide an uplift. , Ultherapy does require a local topical anesthetic prior to the procedure. Some patients may need. an oral medication to provide additional comfort. If needed there is a new option called ProNox, a device that provides laughing gas similar to want is used by dentists. This can provide additional comfort during the procedure without having any residual effect from a medication. This allows patients to freely drive themselves home without any concern of a hangover effect of a medication.

Going under the knife causes intense pain, so surgical facelifts are performed while the patient is under general or twilight anesthesia.

Procedure duration

A single Ultherapy skin tightening session can take between 60 and 120 minutes..

Facelift surgery can last between 1 and 8 hours depending on how extensive the treatment is.

Recovery period and safety

After your Ultherapy skin tightening session, it’s possible to have side effects such as swelling and redness in the treated areas. However, these are often mild and vanish quickly by the next day, allowing you to resume regular activities like work and exercise as soon as possible. The reason for the no downtime is because all the action occurs deep below the surface of the skin so it is able to hide the majority of the swelling and redness. You won’t have to worry about complications, either; the FDA has already approved Ultherapy treatment for its safety.

Facelift surgery results in considerable swelling, bruising, and pain. You’ll need post-surgery care as well as weeks of rest to manage these side effects and prevent the occurrence of complications such as bleeding, infection, unsightly scars, nerve injury. and more. You’ll have to wait between two weeks and a month before you can resume usual activities.


Ultherapy results aren’t immediate; they begin to reveal themselves 3 to 6 months after treatment and last up to 2 years.

Facelift surgery results are immediately noticeable and last between 5 and 15 years.

Patient candidacy

People who are just starting to show the effects of aging, such as minor sagging and wrinkles, will benefit from Ultherapy the most.

Good candidates for facelift surgery are those who already have significant sagging and skin laxity.

Interested to know more about Ultherapy treatment? Feel free to call our Rejuvé clinic at (408) 740-5320 if you have any questions. We’d be delighted to hear from you! Rejuve is proud to serve the San Jose Bay Area and the communities of Saratoga, Los Gatos, Campbell, Cupertino, and Los Altos.

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