3 Year Experience with Infini - High Intensity Focused Radiofrequency
Article tagsAcne Scars
It’s been a little over 3 years since the Infini was introduced in the United States in August, 2013 by Lutronic. It was developed in Korea, and had been used in the prior 2 years in Asia and Europe. Infini brought a significant evolutionary change to treating the skin with radiofrequency (RF). Although RF has an over 50 year history of medical uses, Lutronic’s Infini innovations has elevated the precision in which the RF energy is delivered to an entirely new level.
It been long established that heating skin causes an inflammatory response that results in collagen stimulation, tissue contraction, and skin rejuvenation. While 42-45 C (denaturing) has shown to be enough to create this cascade, 65-70 C (coagulation) has been shown to lead to maximum collagen deposition. Radiofrequency devices which push their energy through the skin without penetration are limited to temperatures of 45 C because of the risk of harming the skin surface (blisters/scarring). Bypassing the surface with microneedles, as Infini does, temperatures can go up to the coagulation point with very little risk. In addition, Infini can place this energy at the “sweet spot” of the skin, the mid to deep dermis. The depth of most of the predecessor RF devices was always in question, and was often too deep (fat necrosis risk).
Over the last several months, there have been significant treatment innovations with Infini. With diligent research and histological evaluations, optimal settings were further enhanced. These settings lead to larger zones of coagulation during each pulse. This translates into fewer pulses needed (shorter treatment times), and better results. In addition, the treatment tip was modified to allow for a more even distribution of energy, which also leads to better outcomes. The “price to pay” for these innovations is slightly more prolonged redness, possibly up to a week. Also, “microdots”, the grid-like white marks from the needle tips, might last for more than a couple weeks. These have always resolved without scarring or complications.
Dr. Weiner has performed approximately 1000 cases in the past 3 years with Infini. (Cases = areas treated, i.e face, neck, chest). A summary of his findings:
- There have been no long term complications in his patients. There have been no incidences of scarring, unwanted fat loss, or pigmentation issues.
- Infini is safe to use on all skin types.
- Infini is the most effective device available for acne scarring when compared to ablative, non ablative lasers, and other RF devices.
- Significant improvements can be established in the neck wrinkles, necklace lines, and creepy skin of the neck.
- Superficial fine lines on the face are well treated.
- Jawline and submental definition are improved in most cases. Purposeful fat loss is possible in these areas with deeper, more aggressive settings.
- Infini is an option for axillary hyperhidrosis with proven long term results.
- Infini can be safely used all over the body but the small footplate limits treatments on large surface areas.
- Treatment of stretchmarks is only mildly effective. Further refinements in settings and combination therapies are still being researched.
- Treatment of malar festoons (fat pads) is moderately effective with Infini (and will soon be even better with new protocols).
- Over 95% of patients can be treated with only topical anesthesia. With the addition of the Superficial Skin Block, treatments are extremely well tolerated by the remaining patients.
- For optimal results, some patients need volumization and Sculptra can be done simultaneously with Infini treatments.
Infini has already established itself as a low risk, low downtime, skin tightening procedure. Expect better results, less number of treatments needed, and new indications in the future. Significant resources at Lutronic will build upon the Infini platform to maintain its market dominance in the Aesthetic RF market.