TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - They say it lasts longer than Botox and it's cheaper than a facelift - but what is it, really?
People are now rushing to the plastic surgeon's office to get the Vampire Facelift.
9OYS met with Mena Latas a clinician at Mena Aesthetics to find out more about the Vampire Facelift and to personally watch the process.
"Vampires they suck all your blood and this is what we're taking, your blood a little bit from your body, and then we inject it back into your skin," explained Latas.
It's technical name is the Selphyl System. A doctor draws your blood, separates the platelets, combines it with a calcium solution and then injects it into the patient's wrinkles.
It similar to Botox, but this time it is a wrinkle "filler" from your own body.
"It's longer result and it's more natural result," said Latas.
Isabel Ramirez said the Vampire Facelift worked for her.
"Five [years] will do," Ramirez laughed, "It feels good."
About 300 offices now use the system nationwide. To see some before and after photos from those doctors visit vampirefacelift.com
Most doctors call it a good way to handle early signs of aging, but the former president of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, Dr. Phil Haeck, said he's not on board with the hype. He says there's not enough research, yet.
"I haven't seen any safety studies that show this is actually safe," state Dr. Haeck, "We spend a lot of time during a facelift trying to avoid having blood under your skin."
Fans of the Vampire Facelift say it is cheaper than surgery and lasts a lot longer than other fillers. Some doctors claim the results can last up to two years.
However, an investigation by the New York Times found, "No national clinical trial has been done to prove such claims."
"Every surgeon wants to distinguish himself in a marketplace and giving this, a sort of sexy mystical title like the vampire lift, is a gimmick." said Dr. Haeck.
"We have patients that we've already done and they are seeing the results and they're loving it," said Latas, "So I feel it works. It is not a gimmick."
Some doctors claim the process is FDA approved, but the FDA said it approved a similar procedure for other medical uses years ago, but as to the Selphyl System it said, "It is unclear what this product is truly intended to do. The FDA is looking into this further."
Ramirez isn't worried, though. She said she loves her results.
"Oh wow! It looks good," she smiled after getting the Vampire Facelift, "I love the way it looks around my eyes already."
The Vampire Facelift costs on average $1000 and takes about 30 minutes.
The offices in Tucson that do the Vampire Facelift include: Mena Aesthetics, Tucson Cosmetics, Chavez Medical Group, and Skin Spectrum.