The Thermage procedure uses radiofrequency (RF) energy to treat facial defects like fine lines, wrinkles and acne scars.
The Thermage procedure is also known as ThermaLift, Thermal Lifting, Therma Plasty, and Thermoplastic contouring.
The procedure has been shown to tighten, smoothen the skin and erase the facial wrinkles. There are no needles, injections or incisions. The procedure can be done rapidly with little or no downtime. One of the major advantages of Thermage is that it can be performed on all types of skin.
The procedure is done by a hand help device with has a RF tip at the end. The RF energy is delivered through the tip and on to the skin. There is a constant amount of energy delivered uniformly to all layers of the skin. The tip also has a cooling device so it does not burn the superficial skin layer. The heart energy to the lower layers of the skin causes tightening of the loose tissues which eventually results in a tighter, smoother and fresher looking face.
What happens during the procedure?
The procedure is done as an outpatient. Before the procedure your face is cleansed to rid of all the oils and the treatment sites are marked using a grid.
The probe is then placed next to your skin and the RF waves are sent through the skin. The procedure is definitely not painless and you will feel the heat sensation. The doctor may apply a local anesthetic if you desire.
The procedure takes anywhere from 30 - 90 minutes depending on the size of the skin defect.
The treatment is based on the number of pulses and the average number of pulses one requires ranges from 300-900
The results are not immediate but within a few weeks you will notice that your skin is tighter, smoother and younger looking. The maximal benefit is seen anywhere from 2-6 months.
One can usually return to work and resume all normal activities the next day. There is no special skin care required after the procedure.
Unlike all the previous procedures used to treat wrinkles a single session may be adequate for the majority but a few may require touch ups in future.
Today Thermage is being used to treat skin defects in the abdomen, hips, buttocks, waist line and even the breast.
Thermage can be combined with other cosmetic procedures
Despite vendors claiming that the results last 2 years, individual patient reports indicate that the durability is much less. Some claim that the results only last 12-18 months.
Swelling, redness, bumps, blisters and even skin burn have been reported after the procedure. The majority of these subside in a few days. In the rare patient, a worsening of the skin defect may occur
The cost of the Thermage procedure ranges from $1500 per area up to $5000-$7000 depending on the treatment package.