Why our skin sags
Saggy skin can be caused by various factors. Loss of elasticity and facial muscle mass as well as resorption of our bony structure are some of them, and these changes can be accelerated by negative lifestyle factors like smoking, and prolonged sun exposure.
Now, with current advances in energy devices, we are able to rejuvenate ageing skin by targeting the factors mentioned above, while avoiding traditional surgical options with the long downtime and surgical scars that come with such invasive procedures.
About Ultraskin HIFU treatment
HIFU stands for High Intensity Focused Ultrasound. It is a procedure that uses ultrasound waves to generate a thermal effect under our skin. Thermal energy generated at the focal point of the ultrasound wave increases local temperatures to around 60 degrees Celsius. This thermal effect jumpstarts a regenerative process that strengthens existing collagen and stimulates the stem cells in our skin to produce new collagen.
How does Ultraskin HIFU work?
This latest generation of Ultraskin HIFU machine has better precision, delivers focused ultrasound energy which heats up subcutaneous tissues safely at 3 different depths in the deep skin:
Superficial Muscular Aponeurotic System (SMAS) - 4.5mm
- SMAS is the area just below the dermis and the top portion of the muscle layer.
- Ultraskin HIFU delivers accurate and stable ultrasound energy into the SMAS layer and deep dermis area without any skin damages.
- SMAS layer is targeted in majority of the surgical facelifts, and is a main focus of our Ultraskin HIFU treatment to bring about effective, observable tightening.
When there is more tightening, there is better lifting.
Deep Dermis – 3mm
- The deep dermis layer is a fertile ground for fibroblasts and other connective tissues.
- The heating of skin tissues is targeted mainly at skin tightening.
- By stimulating this layer, Ultaskin HIFU is able to cause the stem cells to produce more collagen over time.
- Through the regeneration of collagen, wrinkles are eliminated in the process of firming and tightening the skin.
Superficial dermis – 1.5mm
- At this depth, Ultraskin HIFU is able to lighten pigmentation and brighten the skin.
- By tightening this layer, it also results in smaller pores and improved texture, achieving top skin rejuvenation.
A proven and safe technology, combined with a comfortable pain-profile, the Ultraskin HIFU is an effective tissue tightening procedure highly sought-after by many patients.
– Dr. Heng Wee Soon
Medical Director, The Ogee Clinic
Features of Ultraskin HIFU
- No harm, No infection, No bleeding
- Immediate Lifting
- Longer term effects
- No downtime
- Clinically proven safe treament
What does collagen do? Why is it important for our youthful appearance?
Collagen is a natural protein within our skin that gives it structure, making it firm and toned. As we age, collagen loses strength and its ability to stand up against gravity. The resultant appearance of this process appears as skin sagging and lines and wrinkles on our face, giving the characteristic droopy face appearance, where jowling appears on the sides of our mouths.
Which areas of the face can be treated with HIFU?
All areas of the face which experience sagging with age can be treated with HIFU. These include the lower face, the mid face, the cheeks, the temples, forehead, and even around the eyes. The HIFU comes with applicators of different sizes, which allows Dr. Heng to be able to treat large regions of the lower face and chin to give the desired lift, as well as small areas of the face where fine lines tend to gather (e.g. eye regions).
Is HIFU facelift same as surgical facelift?
In plastic surgery, the surgeon makes an incision to gain access to the desired skin depth, before mobilizing and repositioning the layers. HIFU uses micro-focused ultrasound energy to achieve skin tightening, without any incisions, making it essentially a non-invasive procedure. HIFU may not necessarily replicate the result of traditional surgical facelifts, but the depth penetration of ultrasound energy is able to stimulate deep structural support layers of the skin, including those targeted during surgical facelifts. HIFU have proven to be a reliable and safe alternative to those who desire skin tightening but not yet open to surgery.
Can HIFU be done on other anatomical regions outside of the face?
HIFU can be done on areas where skin tightening and collagen remodeling is desired.
Skin tightening for specific body regions can be achieved through HIFU. These include:
- Base of neck to upper chest area Décolletage area
- Abdominal skin tightening
- Mild abdominal contouring
Why Ultraskin over Ultherapy?
Clinical studies have shown that the pain duration in Ulthera is much more severe than Ultraskin. This means that during treatment, Ultraskin in comparison to Ulthera, can penetrate deeper into the skin layer with less discomfort, hence providing an even better therapy results and increased safety profile for the user.
Frequently Asked Questions
Any patient who is experiencing mild to moderate skin sagging and skin laxity can benefit from HIFU. For younger patients under age of 40 who desire a sharper face, or a more defined jawline or chin, HIFU is able to achieve the results as well.
While comfort thresholds vary from patient to patient, most patients report that the HIFU procedure is tolerable. We take measures to make the experience as pleasant as possible. You will be given pre-medications to reduce the sensation of the procedure, in addition an anesthetic cream is applied throughout the regions to be treated for up to 45 minutes before commencement of the treatment.
There may be slight redness for up to an hour or so following the treatment, and a small percentage of patients may have slight swelling, tingling, or tenderness to touch, but these are mild and temporary in nature, resolving over 1-2 days.
A well-done HIFU will be able to achieve the following benefits:
- Face lifting
- Neck lifting
- Fine wrinkle reduction
- Pore refinement
- V face contouring
- Double chin reduction
- V face shaping
Most will be able to observe mild firming effect shortly after treatment (1-2 days), the lifting and toning effect will start to be visible 4 weeks after treatment.
For most patients, they should see sustained results even after 12 months. For patients with more severe skin sagginess, another HIFU will usually be performed within 6 months.
HIFU as a technology is very safe. HIFU is a type of therapeutic ultrasound energy. Therapeutic ultrasound as a medical intervention has been extensively studied in the field of medicine for many decades. Besides facial aesthetics, it now has its applications in the field of urology, surgery, and physiotherapy. Its track record as a reliable and safe therapeutic tool is evident.
After a HIFU treatment session, you can return to your daily activities immediately. Dr. Heng may give you specific post-procedure care instructions to optimize the long- term tightening result.
Most patients can achieve noticeable improvement from just one treatment session, some may benefit from more than one. The results vary for each patient because of the variability in the extent of skin laxity as well as individual response to treatment. In addition, you may want to maintain the result by continuously stimulating your collagen to grow. During your consultation, Dr. Heng will do a thorough assessment and recommend a treatment plan best suited to your needs.
The cost of the procedure depends on the areas that are treated. A more specific quotation can be obtained only after a complete assessment of the patient’s concerns and needs.
Definitely. Both men and women can benefit from HIFU.