Radio Frequency vs. Ultherapy (Ultrasound)?

Following up to my question regarding the wrinkles on my cheeks, some response recommended Radio frequency treatment and only one recommended Ultrasound Therapy. 1. I know ultrasound therapy is newer - is it better? how do I choose between the options 2. If I go down the path of Radio frequency - how do I know if I need mono polar or bipolar ?

Doctor Answers 4

You are going to get differing opinions about helping cheek wrinkles but mine is Infini RF device

In my opinion, Ulthera is more for tightening jawlines, necks, and lifting cheeks and eyebrows. The new RF device, Infini, uses microneedles with bipolar electrodes at the ends of these to tighten skin more superficially than the Ulthera. I go into an in depth analysis of the RF devices on my blog and you should read it. I have both Ulthera and Infini devices. Steve Weiner, MD, Facial Plastic Surgery, between Destin and Panama City Beach.


Panama City Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Radiofrequency vs. Ultherapy

Hi Chanan,

Great question. Ulthera is the only technology FDA approved for lifting and tightening the skin of the face and neck. The most superficial Ulthera transducer is best for wrinkles on the cheeks and for lines around the lips. In my opinion, Ultherapy is better than radiofrequency for treatment of wrinkles on the face. Of the radiofrequency devices, Venus Freeze and Exilis have the highest patient satisfaction rates on RealSelf. There is a new radiofrequency device, Infini, which uses micro-needle RF. We are investigating this technology, it looks promising for facial wrinkles. Good luck and be well.

Dr. P

Michael A. Persky, MD
Encino Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

Ultherapy versus Radiofrequency

This is a very good question. At our practice we have both devices- Ultherapy and Exilis. Both provide results. The Ultherapy has the benefit of being a one-time treatment, and of targeting deeper tissue (the smas layer). Exilis is very comfortable and can be repeated at weekly intervals, but targets the skin (more superficial tissue). Most patients can benefit from combining both treatments, but may choose one or the other based on their schedule, degree of skin laxity versus heavy tissue sagging, etc. Good Luck!

Roy A. David, MD
San Diego Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

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Radiofrequency vs. Ultherapy

RF and focused ultrasound (Ulthera) have some similarities, in that both are based on placing heat into connective tissue in order to stimulate a healing response leading to tissue tightening. Ulthera has FDA clearance for lifting, and the focusing aspect allows it to be targeted at specific layers under the skin. RF is less targeted but may have more effect on the superficial layer of the skin. Both are usually a single session treatment, with the response taking up to 3 months to see the full effect.

Richard Baxter, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 47 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.