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Thermi RF: Radiofrequency Skin Tightening

What is Radiofrequency Skin Tightening (ThermiRF)? How Does It Work?

Radiofrequency (RF) is energy in the radio wave portion of the electromagnetic spectrum.  When sufficient RF energy is concentrated onto body tissues those tissues heat up; the more RF energy applied, the hotter the target tissue gets.  If used judiciously under controlled conditions and the undersurface of the skin (the subdermis), RF energy can heat the subdermis sufficiency to cause the skin above it to contract and tighten. Heating the subdermis also stimulates the formation of collagen, a protein that tightens the skin further.

We use the unique RF generating device produced by ThermiAesthetics, the ThermiRF.  A slender probe attached to the RF generator is introduced under the skin that has been previously numbed with local anesthetic.  RF energy passes through this probe heating up the undersurface of the skin to the desired temperature.  The ThermiRF device is able to accurately monitor the temperature generated by the RF energy beneath the skin while an external infrared camera monitors the temperature of the skin above.  Sufficient heat can be delivered safely to the undersurface of the skin allowing it to tighten without causing burns in the skin above.

When is ThermiRF Used?

ThermiRF is indicated for tightening lax skin in those who either aren’t ready for excisional cosmetic surgery, don’t want such surgery, or for those who can’t have surgery for medical and other reasons.  It is considered an intermediate treatment, not meant to replace open cosmetic surgery such as a facelift, neck lift, arm lift, or tummy tuck, but rather to deliver reliable improvement without surgery with a minimally invasive procedure.

Where on My Body can ThermiRF be Used?

The ThermiRF device can effectively tighten loose skin most anywhere on the body:  the hanging skin of the neck under the chin, the back rolls under the bra, the inner thighs, the lower abdomen, the loose skin on the back of the upper arms, etc.  Certain areas such as the skin of the neck are ideal for this treatment and respond with excellent results if the skin there is not overly lax. Combining liposuction with RF makes enhances the effects of either alone, making for a superb body contouring result.  

How is a ThermiRF Treatment Done? How Long Does it Take? Is it Painful?

The area to be treated is numbed with tumescent fluid, the same local anesthetic used for liposuction.  This can be done with or without conscious sedation as deemed appropriate.  Once the tumescent anesthesia is infiltrated under the skin there is no pain during the procedure. If liposuction is to be performed, it is done first.  Then through tiny incisions, the ThermiRF probe is introduced and passed into the area to be treated until it is sufficiently heated.  The tiny incisions are left open to allow drainage and a compression garment is placed is placed over the treated area.  For most areas, the ThermiRF procedure takes less than thirty minutes. 

What is the Downtime from a ThermiRF Treatment?

Patients are up and around with minimal discomfort within a day of treatment.  Pain is easily handled with over-the-counter analgesics.  Light activities can be resumed usually within 48 hours including returning to a sedentary job.

How Long Before I See the Results from a ThermiRF Treatment?

While in most cases, despite swelling immediately post procedure, some improvement is clearly evident.  However, it can take several months for full collagen formation to occur and the final results to be apparent.  

Are There Any Contraindications to ThermiRF?

Being a minimally invasive procedure, there no specific contraindications to the procedure other than medical contraindications to any procedure in general; that is poor overall health or the taking of certain medications that predispose to bleeding, poor healing and infection. 

Are There Any Complications from ThermiRF?

Bruising and swelling can occur but disappear quickly.  Occasional small skin burns are possible but are exceedingly rare and heal unremarkably.  The ThermiRF procedure is extremely safe, patient friendly, and complication free.

What Other Things Can ThermiRF Do?

ThermiRase: A ThermiRF probe can be used to selectively ablate (thermally damage) those nerves that enervate the muscles of frowning in the forehead, effectively creating a long term “Botox” effect.

ThermiDry: For those three percent of the population with excessive underarm sweating (hyperhidrosis), applying ThermiRF in the armpits can effect a considerable reduction in the sweating, bringing relief from this embarrassing condition.

ThermiVA: With a specially designed hand piece now just becoming available, applying radiofrequency energy with the ThermiRF generator entirely non-invasively and painlessly to the labia and/or the lining of the vagina, the labia can be reduced in size and the vaginal canal tightened.

Thermi RF Videos

ThermiTight® neck application

ThermiTight® arm application

ThermiTight® breast application

ThermiTight® Animation


Interested in Seeing if You Will Benefit from ThermiRF? Call 623.876.9494 to Schedule a Complimentary Consultation