HIFU Full Face and
Neck Skin Tightening
High-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) is a relatively new cosmetic treatment for skin tightening that some consider a noninvasive and painless replacement for face lifts. It uses ultrasound energy to encourage the production of collagen, which results in firmer skin.
HIFU uses focused ultrasound energy to target the layers of skin just below the surface. The ultrasound energy causes the tissue to heat up rapidly.
Once the cells in the targeted area reach a certain temperature, they experience cellular damage. While this may seem counterintuitive, the damage actually stimulates the cells to produce more collagen — a protein that provides structure to the skin.
The increase in collagen results in tighter, firmer skinTrusted Source with fewer wrinkles. Since the high-frequency ultrasound beams are focused on a specific tissue site below the skin’s surface, there’s no damage to the upper layers of the skin and adjacent issue.
HIFU may not be appropriate for everyone. In general, the procedure works best on people older than 30 with mild-to-moderate skin laxity.
People with photodamaged skin or a high degree of loose skin may need several treatments before seeing results.
Older people with more extensive photo-aging, severe skin laxity, or very saggy skin on the neck aren’t good candidates and may need surgery.
HIFU isn’t recommended for people with infections and open skin lesions at the target area, severe or cystic acne, and metallic implants in the treatment area.
Benefits of high-intensity focused ultrasound
According to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), HIFU and other nonsurgical alternatives to facelifts have seen a major increase in popularity over the last few years. The total number of procedures performed has increased 64.8 percent since 2012.
HIFU has many aesthetic benefits, including:
tightening sagging skin on the neck (sometimes called turkey neck)
lifting the cheeks, eyebrows, and eyelids
enhancing jawline definition
tightening of the décolletage
smoothing the skin
Study results are promising. A 2017 studyTrusted Source showed that HIFU significantly improved skin elasticity of the cheeks, jowls and neckline after 12 weeks.
In a larger study of 93 people, 66 percent of those treated with HIFU perceived an improvement in the appearance of their face and neck after 90 days.
What does HIFU feel like?
You may experience slight discomfort during an HIFU procedure. Some people describe it as tiny electric pulses or a light prickly sensation.
If you’re worried about pain, your doctor may suggest taking acetaminophen (Tylenol) or a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID), such as ibuprofen (Advil), prior to treatment.
Immediately after the treatment, you may experience mild redness or swelling, which will gradually recede over the next few hours.