Dr. Shieh was one of the first in the United States to be certified and provide the Fotofacial RF treatment upon its FDA approval in October 2002.
As skin ages it becomes dry and rough on the surface and develops wrinkles. It also loses the glow of youth and becomes darker in color. Many changes result from sun-damage including irregular pigmentation spots and loss of elasticity. Some people develop broken blood vessels and generalized redness about the face and rosacea. The neck and upper chest areas become ruddy and irregularly pigmented. The sun-exposed areas of the arms and hands show brown age spots.
FotoFacial RF skin rejuvenation utilizes technology approved by the FDA called ELOS (Electro-Optical-Synergy) technology. FotoFacial RF treats these multiple problems of the skin using a bright pulsed light synergistically with radiofrequency electrical energy. The treatments make the skin healthier, smoother, cleaner, brighter and younger with reduction of wrinkles and texture improvement. The treatment is gentle on the skin. Unlike traditional laser treatment, it does not cause wounds and therefore no down time. This technology is a dramatic improvement over previous "IPL" (intense pulsed light) treatments, or treatments that do not combine electrical radiofrequency energy. It is the electrical radiofrequency energy that is able to affect the deep collagen to tighten the skin and reduce wrinkles.
Whereas IPL (photofacial) treatments would take 5 or more treatments, the new generation Fotofacial RF accomplishes the same results or better in just 3 treatments. IPL works for just surface color blemishes, but requires addition of an ND-Yag laser, or "Genesis" laser to influence the collagen. With the Fotofacial RF, the RF energies and the light energies work to accomplish 2-3 times better textural improvements (pores, wrinkles, laxity) than the IPL plus ND-Yag/Genesis laser.
Because it is a gentle treatment, it takes a combination of three to five visits, each approximately 3 weeks apart. During the course of these visits, the strength of each treatment is adjusted according to the skin's response. Once the skin's condition is optimized, intermittent treatment once or twice a year is recommended to maintain the improvement.
Indication - The sun-damaged roughness, age spots, large pores, wrinkles, broken vessels, redness of the skin and rosacea are improved with this technique. The neck and chest are other areas that respond well, if they show dark spots or red discoloration. Brown age spots on the arms and hands are improved dramatically. The only precaution is that the person's skin not be recently tanned. Individuals with dark skin may need to be treated with a skin lightening regimen prior to the FotoFacial RF treatment.
Procedure - The skin in the area of treatment is made numb by applying topical anesthetic cream 30 minutes to an hour before the procedure. Based on the patient’s skin type and past treatment results, an appropriate computerized setting is selected. The skin is cooled by the treatment head, and the electrical and light energy is transmitted to the skin. The patient may feel a rubber-band snapping type of sensation.
Recovery - Some redness and mild swelling may be seen in some individuals. The brown spots may become darker for a few days and will lighten gradually thereafter. Makeup may be used to cover these mild changes. The patient may continue with their daily routine. Strict sun protection of the skin is a must.
Risks - Skin surface blistering is a possibility although it is rare. It usually settles and resolves well if it does appear.
New look - The facial skin shows a youthful glow with improved tone and color, and reduction of wrinkles and laxity. The hands and arms can be made more youthful with a significant reduction in age spots. The ruddiness of the neck and chest can be improved to make the skin color more natural and uniform. FotoFacial RF treatments have a very high satisfaction rate.