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Saturday
May282005

Thermage Skin Tightening

Thermage is FDA approved for tightening and thickening skin without surgery. This non-invasive choice is particularly attractive for patients who don’t want to undergo the more drastic effects of a traditional surgical facelift and its associated recovery period.

Thermage uses a radiofrequency (RF) technology to heat the deep layers of the skin while protecting the skin’s outer layers with a cooling cryogen spray. This deep heating promotes immediate collagen contraction beneath the skins surface and generates new collagen growth over time.

Thermage: Key Points

• Thermage is approved by the FDA for skin tightening and collagen growth.
• Thermage provides an alternative to traditional surgical face lifts.
• Thermage not only treats existing conditions, but is also a preventative treatment for future problems including wrinkles, loose skin and collagen loss.
• Thermage can treat any area of the body but is most commonly used on the face, around the eyes and forehead, cheeks and jowls, and the neck. Results actually increase over time. With maximum results usually achieved up to 6 months after the treatment.
• Thermage “Vectoring” can be used for more specific results. Vectoring uses a second, double row of pulses to tighten skin along specific lines or “vectors”. In this way we can perform eyelifts, neck lifts, bags around the eyes, crows feet, or any part of the face where loose skin is unwanted.

Thermage: Key Benefits
• Thermage tightens skin and stimulates new collagen growth.
• Thermage can be performed in 2-3 hours under local anesthetic.
• Thermage actually “tightens” skin rather than stretching skin.
• The results look completely natural
• The cost is less than traditional, surgical facelifts
• The results are very long lasting or permanent.
• Additional treatments can maximize the effects or just maintain results.

Thermage: Benefits in comparison to traditional surgical face lifts
• No cutting. No stretching. No stitches. No scars.
• Thermage requires no physical recovery time.
• The skin is tightened rather than stretched, eliminating the pulled look that can happen with traditional face lifts.
• The chance of complications or infection is almost nil.
• Thermage can be combined with other treatments like filler injections and Pointé Lifts for more dramatic effects.

Possible Complications with Thermage Treatments:

Thermage complications are very rare. The device contains three computers that constantly monitor the amount of energy being delivered. However, as with any medical treatment there exists the possibility of other results, including:
• Burns; in clinical trials for Thermage less than 1% of patients received any burns. (There were only two that healed completely and without complication). At Surface, we have never seen a burn.
• The effect is less dramatic than the client wants: However, Thermage can be used as a treatment more than once. Results can be improved or enhanced with additional treatments like Botox or Surface Pointé Lifts.
NOTE: Thermage has received mixed reviews from both patients and physicians. In our opinion this is because of the way that Thermage has been marketed to physicians as an "add-on" to their practice. Thermage results are highly dependant upon the treatment you receive. While Thermage is now widely available, our recommendation is that you only have a Thermage treatment from a physician who specializes in non-surgical cosmetic medicine and has a long history of experience with this treatment.

An article from Vogue Magazine

Thermage information and before and after pictures.

Reader Comments (1)

Two Comments on the Above Post on Thermage:

1. It is my understanding that NO device has yet received FDA clearance to claim TIGHTENING (although many seem to do so in their marketing).

2. Does anyone have any opinion on the popularity (and/or efficacy) of RF devices for FACIAL vs. BODY treatments? It is my opinion that about 90% of treatments delivered are still working on the face, yet there seems to be a great deal of marketing the past year emphasizing BODY treatments.

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