You’ve seen it in billboards, the television and on the Internet: High-Intensity Focused Ultrasound (HIFU) – the new and painless alternative to facelifts. It’s the new kid in town when it comes to cosmetic treatments, and people all over are curious about HIFU in Singapore. But does it really live up to the hype?
What is HIFU?
First, let’s understand what exactly the HIFU treatment is. HIFU isn’t really a new technology per se, as for a long time it has been used to treat certain medical conditions, most especially tumours. In fact, HIFU has existed since the early 1940s, and several kinds of research have been done on its possible uses. When it comes to cosmetics though, HIFU has only started to gain traction for the beauty industry in 2008 when it was used to improve skin quality. Now, thanks to the advancements in the HIFU technology, new machines have been invented that allowed the use of HIFU for face lifting purposes, with results similar to that which can be achieved in facelift surgery.
How does HIFU technology work?
HIFU stands for high-intensity focused ultrasound, which is a technology that uses non-ionizing ultrasonic waves to heat or destroy body tissue. The resulting ultrasound energy is strong enough to increase blood flow, or even destroy tumours in the body. It is in fact very similar to ultrasound imaging but uses a lower frequency and continuous transmission to be able to heat tissue.
For face lifting, the HIFU machine will target the layers of the skin beneath the skin surface. This will make the underlying tissue heat up very, very quickly, and will cause some damage to the tissue’s cells. Although this might sound like it’s destroying the tissue, it’s really not, and all it does is to stimulate collagen production in your body to improve the structure and quality of the skin.
Is HIFU treatment safe?
Since it emerged as a possible cosmetic technology, multiple clinical trials have been done to ensure its safety as a treatment. Not only was it safe for people, but these trials have also shown the effectiveness of the treatment in face lifting and reducing wrinkles. The effects are slow to appear though, as HIFU only triggers the production of collagen in the body and could take a few months before its effects are fully realized. In the USA, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the use of HIFU for several cosmetic uses, including brow lifts and reducing wrinkles – which further supports the safety of the emerging technology.
Why should you choose HIFU treatment over traditional facelifts?
Well, it all depends on the situation and what you want to achieve. The main advantages of this method compared to facelift surgery are that it’s a noninvasive procedure, is practically painless, and has little to no downtime. On the other hand, don’t expect results right away as it works from the inside by stimulating collagen production. Its effects are also not permanent but can last from 1 up to 2 years after undergoing the HIFU procedure.
Cambridge Medical recommends that patients undergo a full consultation at the aesthetic clinic first before settling on a decision. The specialist or staff should be able to give you needed advice as well as ensuring your safety and comfort.
Am I a suitable candidate for HIFU treatment?
The best candidates for undergoing a HIFU procedure are young people, who are wary about the risks involved in traditional facelift surgery and would like a less. Its also important that there is minimal sagging on the skin, as more severe cases may not be able to be addressed by the procedure. If the sagging skin is severe, consider a traditional facelift instead as it is much more suited for that case.
What results can I expect from a HIFU treatment in Singapore?
HIFU for face lifting has become a very popular procedure recently, as its effects have been shown to be highly effective and long-lasting. Some of the results you can expect include:
- reduction of wrinkles on the face and skin
- reduction of a turkey neck or the sagging skin on a person’s neck
- enhancement of the jawline
- lifting of the eyebrows, the cheeks, and eyelids
- skin smoothening
Take note that several studies have already been done for HIFU treatment, and it has been shown to significantly improve skin elasticity in the cheeks, abdomen, and thighs.
What can I expect during the HIFU treatment?
When it comes to preparing for the procedure, there isn’t really any special preparation needed for it. The only thing that the specialist or staff will ask of you is to remove makeup and other skin products from your face before they start the procedure.
The target area is then cleaned by the specialist, after which a numbing cream is applied to reduce discomfort. An ultrasound gel is then applied to aid in the treatment. A handheld device is usually used by the specialist to administer the HIFU energy, which is connected to the main machine. There may be some slight discomfort during the procedure, which can be described as a series of small electrical pulses that cause a prickly sensation on the skin. The whole procedure should be over in about 30 to 90 minutes.
How is recovery after a HIFU treatment?
There is almost no downtime after undergoing a HIFU treatment in Singapore. In fact, a lot of patients go back to their normal activities immediately after the procedure. This makes it a perfect option for working people who don’t have a lot of free time. There may be some numbness and bruising on the targeted area, but these side effects should fade away in 2 to 3 days. Depending on the situation, more sessions may be needed to ensure that the patient achieves his/her predetermined goals for the treatment. Expect the full results of the HIFU treatment to be achieved about 3 months after undergoing it.
Cambridge Medical Group
91B Orchard Road, #08-05A1,
Tower B, Ngee Ann City, Singapore 238874