What is the Difference Between TriPollar and Ultherapy?

Doctor Answers 3

Tripollar is painless while Ultherapy may require pain medication.

One difference between the two treatments is the source of heat. Ultherapy utilizes ultrasound technology to heat the skin while TriPollar uses radiofrequency technology to heat the skin. Another difference between Ultherapy and TriPollar is the amount of pain experienced by the patient during the procedure. Ultherapy can be uncomfortable and may require the patient to take pain medication proir to the procedure to make the treatment more tolerable. Meanwhile, TriPollar is painless and does not require any type of anesthesia or pain medication to tolerate the procedure.


Chicago Dermatologic Surgeon
3.6 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

The two devices you are asking about are different

Thanks for your question. The two devices you are asking about are different. Ultherapy is fractional ultrasound and requires one treatment to tighten the skin of the face, neck, and chest. Some pain is associated with the treatment and results are noticeable within a three-month period of time.

TriPollar uses radiofrequency (RF) energy to cause skin tightening, something that we all use for body contouring every day in our practices. This machine uses three poles of RF to cause a deeper effect than some of the other RF technologies and the way this was designed, the poles that produce the RF also help take away pain that can be associated with the procedure. So for skin tightening, one needs a series of treatments, usually 4-6, over a 4-6 month period of time, to get the desired results – but this technology works.

Michael Gold, MD
Nashville Dermatologic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Ultherapy and Tripollar

Ultherapy is FDA cleared for non-invasive facial lifting.  It is deep focused ultrasound energy that heats the tissues and causes immediate contraction of the deep connective tissue layer and helps develop collagen production for more than six months after treatment.  Additional uses for contour change are being explored.  Tripollar uses radiofrequency and may not induce tissue tightening but help temporarily improve contour changes. Ultherapy does cause discomfort during treatment but it is manageable for the overwhelming majority of patients and it is the only currently FDA-approved tissue lifitng device. Exilis, Liposonix, Tripollar and CoolSculpting by Zeltiq can create non-invasive contour changes.

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 37 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.