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High-Intensity Focused Ultrasound Waves (HIFU)


High-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) is a relatively new non-invasive and painless cosmetic treatment for skin tightening. A lot of people see it as a perfect replacement for facelifts. It uses ultrasound energy to encourage the production of collagen, which results in firmer and more elastic skin.

High-intensity focused ultrasound waves were most famous for treating tumors. However, around 14 years ago, doctors have started using HIFU for cosmetic and aesthetic reasons. This treatment method was approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2009 for brow lifts. In 2014, it was approved for improving lines and wrinkles of the upper chest and décolletage (neckline).

Many medical institutes found high-intensity focused ultrasound waves treatment safe and effective for facial lifting and improving lines and wrinkles. Patients were able to see the results of the treatment only a few months after it. And the good catch is that it has none of the risks associated with surgical treatments.

The device that produces high-intensity focused ultrasound waves in our clinic is called doublo gold. It has been proven to be the fastest device that can deliver as many as 300 shots in 8 minutes only.

How Does High-Intensity Focused Ultrasound Waves (HIFU) Treatment Work?

High-intensity focused ultrasound waves use heat at a deep level in the skin. This heat at such a deep level damages targeted skin cells, which causes the body to try to repair them. In order for the body to do this, it produces collagen to aid in cell regrowth. When collagen is produced, therefore, it gives the skin structure, firmness, and elasticity.

Benefits of High-Intensity Focused Ultrasound Waves (HIFU) Treatment

There has been a noticeable rise in the use of nonsurgical treatment methods like HIFU to treat skin issues, especially those related to aging. HIFU or high-intensity focused ultrasound waves have many aesthetic benefits, such as

  • It reduces wrinkles.
  • It tightens the sagging skin on the neck.
  • It works on lifting the cheeks, eyebrows, and eyelids.
  • It helps treat double chin.
  • Body tightening and contour.
  • It enhances jawline definition.
  • It decreases fine lines.
  • It works on tightening the skin of the décolletage.
  • It strengthens the skin of the cheeks and nasolabial fold.
  • It makes the skin smoother.

When Can I See the Results of the HIFU Treatment?

After the treatment session, you will be able to see around 10 to 20 percent improvement. After that, you will notice a gradual effect increase in the coming 1 to 3 months. Your skin, however, will keep improving for up to 6 months from the treatment time.

How Often Do I Need to Have a Session?

We recommend two HIFU treatments in the first year with six months between them to get long-lasting results. You can then get one treatment per year afterward to maintain the results of the treatment. For people after the age of 30, one treatment per year will be effective to maintain the after-effects of the sessions.

What Are the Advantages of High-Intensity Focused Ultrasound Waves Treatment?

High-intensity focused ultrasound waves are a harmless treatment that has replaced surgical treatments. It has many benefits and advantages. This section focuses on the most important and prominent advantages of the HIFU treatment.

  • Non-invasive.
  • Zero downtime is needed.
  • No bleeding.
  • Minimal pain.
  • Immediate 10 to 20 percent improvement visible right after the session.

When Can HIFU Treatments Be Combined with Fillers and Threads?

For the best results, it is always best to start with the high-intensity focused ultrasound waves treatment, then do the threads and fillers treatments as needed. However, if you have previously had fillers and threads treatments, then it is okay to do the session as it will not be harmful to your skin.

Side Effects of the High-Intensity Focused Ultrasound Waves Treatment (HIFU)

This procedure is generally safe and barely has any side effects to it. However, it does have some mild side effects that would last for only a few days after the session. Here are some of the most common side effects of the HIFU treatment:

  • Redness for one to two days after the procedure.
  • Tingling sensation in the treatment area for a couple of days following the treatment.
  • Slight swelling that lasts for a few days.
  • Numbness or change in sensation that can last for a few days.
  • Rarely can some people experience bruising.

What to Expect During the HIFU Procedure

The procedure is simple and easy and will not affect your daily routine as it has zero downtime to it. Here is what happens typically during the HIFU procedure:

  • The doctor will apply topical anesthesia for 20-30 minutes.
  • After that, the doctor will clean your face.
  • Then, the doctor will apply ultrasound gel.
  • The doctor then starts the session by doing full contact between the handpiece and the patient’s skin.
  • The number of shots and the depth of treatment is decided based on the guidelines, doctor experience, and patient.
  • Usually, each area is treated with one or two handpieces with different depths (depths available: 1.5, 3, 4.5 mm).

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) Regarding the HIFU Treatment

The following are some of the most commonly and frequently asked questions regarding the high-intensity focused ultrasound waves treatments for skin aging issues.

How does HIFU work?

This procedure works by focusing a high-level heat on the targeted areas so that it can stimulate collagen production. Collagen then helps the skin to grow, repair, and tighten.

How long until I see the results of the treatment after the session?

Results of around 10 to 20 percent show immediately after the session. However, more improvements become visible to you within the first 20 days after the treatment. In the following weeks, the results will only continue to improve.

How long will the results of the HIFU treatment last?

The answer to this question varies from one person to another. Results can last for up to 6 months following the procedure. If you take good care of your skin, you will see long-lasting effects from as little as one HIFU treatment.

How many treatments will I need?

This will depend on your needs and expectations. Most clients will see effective results after just one treatment. However, it is recommended that you go for one session two times per year. Then after that, you need only one session per year to maintain the effects of the treatment.

What areas can it be used for?

The HIFU treatment can be used for treating signs of aging around the eyes and mouth. It is also commonly used to treat sagging skin on the cheeks. Furthermore, the HIFU treatment can also target skin on the neck and décolletage. This helps to reduce signs of double chins and leave you with a tighter and firmer neck.

Is the HIFU treatment painful?

The HIFU treatment is known to cause very minimal pain. Most people tend to tolerate the treatment while it is being delivered. However, discomfort and pain levels vary from one person to another. The pain and discomfort associated with the treatment are only experienced during the treatment.

Is the HIFU treatment safe?

The HIFU treatment is a safe and non-invasive procedure that is 100% safe.

How long will I need to recover?

You will recover in no time. The best part about the HIFU treatment is that it has no downtime. You could experience mild redness after the treatment, but this will subside within a few days. After the treatment, you can resume your daily activities immediately.