Author: Dott.ssa Basile M. Gaetana (Tania)

Date: 22/04/2020

When we look in the mirror, we often see a tired face, even if it is not what we expect to see.
Without surgery or other invasive methods, radiofrequency facial treatment is the latest breakthrough in skin rejuvenation.

How does radiofrequency treatment work?

It uses radio waves, through a control dial, which penetrates the outer layers of the skin and provides thermal energy to the muscles and tissues below. This heat stimulates the production of collagen, the migration of fibroblasts and this in turn causes the tissue to contract. The overall result is radiant skin and a significant reduction in wrinkles as well as a visible firming of the tissues.
Radiofrequency treatment can be carried out in two modes: bipolar radiofrequency and monopolar radiofrequency.

With monopolar radiofrequency treatment, the current from the source device flows through the body from a single electrode (handpiece) and meets maximum resistance in the area around the tip of the handpiece, where the tissue is then heated down into the subcutaneous layers. A grounded electrode can also be used and connected to the patient on the back or abdomen to provide a low resistance path to the current, which must then flow back to the source device to complete the electrical circuit.

With bipolar radiofrequency treatment, the current from the generating device flows only through the tissue between the two electrodes on the handpiece; these electrodes start and complete the electrical circuit. Therefore, with bipolar treatment, no current flows through the body, so no grounding is required.

In both cases of radiofrequency, it is the resistance to the current flow in the tissue, not the electrode, that generates the heating effect.

The main goal of monopolar radiofrequency is primarily aimed at firming facial tissues.

Does radiofrequency facial treatment work?

Yes, the treatment is based on the application of a single electrode to the treated area, while the opposite electrode is relatively far away so that the current can pass deeper through the body. As a result, the tissue in the treated area is heated rather deep (usually up to 20 mm) and intensively, which may increase both the potential benefits and risks. Monopolar  radiofrequency is typically used to treat loose skin, usually on the face and neck, but also elsewhere. It also has good potential for treating cellulite and for body sculpting.

What are the benefits of radiofrequency facial treatment, what is it good for?

  • It improves the skin's radiance
  • It reshapes the face and neck
  • It significantly improves skin tone
  • It reduces wrinkles and sagging skin
  • It tightens flabby skin
  • It increases the level of collagen
  • It reduces the appearance of a double chin
  • It improves dark circles under the eyes
  • It improves acne

The ultimate goal of radiofrequency is to bring back a more youthful appearance and help reverse the signs of ageing.

Bipolar radiofrequency treatment uses the same method as the previous one; however, in this case, instead of just one electrode, the control dial contains 2 electrodes at the same time for larger areas to be treated.

How does the treatment work?
The treatment works by heating the skin, the dermis in particular, to 42 degrees for 6–9 minutes per area, with a rotation probe that emits radiofrequency waves.
Remodelling of the skin takes place over the course of a few months, for the face 2 to 4 sessions are enough, depending on the extent of the damage, for other areas it can take up to 2 years. Bearing in mind that the results last for around 5 to 7 years, it is a worthwhile sacrifice.

Each treatment takes on average 30 to 50 minutes, including preparation.

Does radiofrequency facial treatment have any side effects?

The heat on the skin can create some discomfort, but any adverse effects such as burns are avoided by the movement of both unipolar and bipolar probes, which is done manually. Some people may experience a slight redness immediately after treatment, but this usually disappears quickly. Most patients are able to return to work and normal activities immediately after treatment.
The most frequently reported side effects after radiofrequency treatment are:

  • swelling
  • redness
  • blisters around the treated area

Conditions that usually disappear in a few days or weeks.

What to do before treatment?
You should try to avoid doing anything that may irritate the skin immediately before treatment. This includes sunbathing (natural or artificial).

Some women find that their skin is more sensitive on the right or left-hand side, before and during the menstrual cycle, so you should take these factors into account when planning your appointment for treatment.

How does radiofrequency treatment take place?
You should wash your face with warm water and soap before the treatment, in order to remove any make-up oils that might interfere with the application of the radiofrequency.

Shortly before treatment, a topical anaesthetic cream will be applied to the area to be treated to help slightly numb the skin, this will then be removed using alcohol-based cleansers immediately before the doctor starts the procedure.

A grid may need to be drawn on your face to guide the doctor's hand.

In addition, a gel is applied that acts as an additional barrier between the surface layers of the skin and the handpiece of the device.

At this point, everything is then set to begin the radiofrequency treatment. Once completed, an additional soothing gel or lotion will be applied to the treated area.

Dott.ssa Basile M. Gaetana (Tania)


Dott.ssa Basile M. Gaetana (Tania)

Medico Chirurgo - N. Iscrizione all' ordine: 8309 - Cosenza

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