Matrix RF Offers Innovative Approach to Fractional Skin Ablation and Resurfacing

January 1, 2009

Amy Taub, M.D., a dermatologist in Lincolnshire, Illinois, U.S. pointed out that the ‘Holy Grail” of skin rejuvenation is the ability to simultaneously combine tightening with reduced wrinkling, in a single procedure. “The ability to reproduce the results of CO2 resurfacing, without the potential long-term complications and hopefully with less downtime is the perfect treatment,” she said. “What impresses me about Matrix RF is the significant skin tightening, as well as wrinkle reduction, with relatively low downtime and minimal discomfort.”

As a principle investigator in the FDA related study, Dr. Taub scheduled three sessions of full-face treatment, at one month intervals, for 20 patients. With topical anesthesia all subjects felt that the pain associated with Matrix RF was non-existent or mild, even when receiving the more aggressive Program C. “Patients looked red for a day or two, but there was no real social downtime,” Dr. Taub advised.

Without prompting, all 20 study patients characterized their skin as brighter and smoother. Moreover, “tightening was comparable to what you would expect from a Thermage (Hayward, California, U.S.) device or Titan from Cutera (Brisbane, California, U.S.). In some ways, the results were more profound than that,” Dr. Taub reported. “There was actually a reshaping; for instance, there was a significant reduction in jowling.” A decrease in distance between the nose and the upper lip was also observed in some cases. “The impact of Matrix RF pulled the upper lip toward the nose to the point where the apparent lip volume increased and there was as though they had been treated with a filler.”

Nasolabial folds and marionette lines also looked like they had been injected with filler when comparing before and after photos in many patients. “I don’t think this occurred from ablation, but rather from the coagulation and the significant amount of tightening associated with this procedure,” Dr. Taub speculated. “Typical CO2 lasers do not really have any inherent tightening properties.  Furthermore, early results of Matrix RF may indicate that radio frequency is actually a superior method of ablation to achieve more tightening per unit of energy than carbon dioxide.”

Dr. Taub envisions customized treatments tips for Matrix RF to treat shallower skin, deeper skin or finer wrinkles. “The shape of the wound is entirely dependent on the tip,” she said. “I foresee Syneron actually creating new tips that have a bigger or smaller footprint. A smaller tip would allow me to treat eyelids.”

—The European Aesthetic