MAY-JUN 2016

MedEsthetics—business education for medical practitioners—provides the latest noninvasive cosmetic procedures, treatment trends, product and equipment reviews, legal issues and medical aesthetics industry news.

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Page 21 of 71

20 MAY/JUNE 2016 | Med Esthetics © GETTY IMAGES AMONG THE LATEST tools in minimally invasive aesthetic medicine are fractional radiofrequency (RF) devices, which excel at addressing acne scarring, striae and mild to moderate wrinkling in patients of all skin types. Fractional RF uses an electrode matrix designed to create zones of thermal wounds surrounded by unaffected tissue. Like fractional lasers, the thermal wounds stimulate dermal remodeling while the healthy surrounding tissue helps promote healing. Some of these devices employ microneedles designed to deliver RF energy to specifi c dermal depths while decreasing damage to the epidermis. Fractional RF is a relatively new technology pioneered in Europe and Asia. In September 2008, the Syneron eMatrix became the fi rst FDA-approved bipolar RF-based device to offer skin resurfacing similar to fractional lasers. Its fractionated handpiece consists of 64 electrodes in a disposable applicator tip. The company's ePrime—now called Profound—the fi rst fractional microneedle RF device to receive FDA approval (December 2010), uses a microneedle electrode array to deliver bipolar RF energy directly to the reticular dermis with minimal disruption of the epidermis. Both noninvasive fractional RF and minimally invasive fractional microneedle RF devices have been shown to produce visible volumetric skin changes and new restructured collagen in the deep dermis. Fractionated RF devices tend to fall between nonablative and ablative fractional lasers in terms of effi cacy and downtime; they also offer some unique benefi ts to patients and practices. Following are four major considerations that will affect whether a practice should adopt this fast-developing technology. Mak i n g By Linda W. Lewis Fractional and microneedle RF devices offer some unique benefits for aesthetic practices. Waves

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