There are numerous exciting new applications of ultrasound
therapy in cosmetic surgery. Ultrasound has been used
for cosmetic purposes since around the early 1980's. Widespread
therapeutic usage, safety, precise control and excellent,
predictable results have made ultrasound an important
addition to cosmetic surgery practices. New and current
uses of ultrasound include facial and body skin rejuvenating
treatments, reduction of stretch marks, treatment of contracture
and scar tissue such as around breast implants, and the
pre- and post-operative treatment of plastic surgery patients
to accelerate healing and recovery after procedures such
as face lifts, tummy tuck, and liposuction. Ultrasound
applied over certain creams contributes to greater effectiveness
through deeper and more thorough penetration of the products.
The mechanisms of action of ultrasound should be considered
in terms of four categories. First is the thermal effect,
which relates to the heat generated into the deeper tissues
and especially the collagen, and the benefits derived
from this. Second is the mechanical effect, which relates
to the high-speed vibrations that act on the tissue just
like a micro massage. Third is the cavitation effect.
This refers to the production of countless microscopic
droplets of oxygen from the vibrational process. Fourth
are the biological effects, which include blood vessel
dilatation, improved blood flow and circulation, sonopheresis,
improved lymph flow, muscle relaxation, reduced inflammation,
and pain relief.
Skin treatments are more effective since deep cleansing,
exfoliation and moisturizing is improved. This is achieved
by high frequency ultrasonic vibrations that penetrate
deep into pores and hair follicles to break up old, dead
cells, secretions and oily blockages. Also, skin metabolism
is increased which causes lymph flow to increased which
causes waste products to be removed more rapidly and effectively.
The more waste products removed the better penetration
and absorption of your skin care products. Deep tissue
micro massage improves skin tone, softness and texture.
All combined these create younger looking skin. Treatment
sessions take about 30-45 minutes and patients report
feeling immediate tightening and softer, smoother skin.
The skin looks more supple and friends will comment about
your "healthy glow".
Stretch marks, fine lines, and sun-damaged skin are improved
through dermapheresis or sonopheresis. These are the terms
that have been applied to the use of ultrasound in stimulating
deeper penetration of products into the skin. To achieve
this even better, we bring together the positive effects
of microdermabrasion, ultrasound technology, and potent
creams. Microdermabrasion removes the thickened and sun-damaged
outer layer of skin then ultrasound application can deliver
special creams deeper into the lower layers of the skin.
In this way the ultimate effects of the creams are much
more potent. Multiple treatments are usually required
and it is safe for all skin colors and types. The number
and frequency of your treatments depend on your skin type
and response to therapy. Improvements are seen usually
by the fourth treatment.
Scar tissue and contracture is improved tremendously
with ultrasound. Most believe this is due in large part
to the thermal effects of ultrasound with the loosening,
stretching, and re-orientation of collagen tissue. This
has demonstrated great effects in speeding the healing
and discoloration of firm or bruised areas occasionally
seen after face lift, tummy tucks, or liposuction. Patients
with breast implants and some hardening have appreciated
softening of the implants and breasts. Treatments sessions
last 15-30 minutes and involve application of the ultrasound
over the firm areas followed by home stretching and massaging
exercises and special cream applications. Six to twelve
treatments provide the best results with improvements
seen usually after four sessions. Home exercises and massage
preserve the results.