The deterioration of skin structure and function brought by the passage of time (chronological aging) and continuing exposure to solar UV irradiation (photoaging) has been object of a number of scientifical studies. Nearly every facet of skin biology is affected by aging. The auto-renewing capability of the epidermis, which delivers vital barrier function, is reduced with age. Vital thermoregulation function of eccrine sweat glands is also altered with age. The dermal collagenous extracellular matrix, which comprises the bulk of skin and confers strength and resiliency, undergoes gradual fragmentation, which deleteriously impacts skin mechanical properties and dermal cell functions. Aging also affects wound repair, pigmentation, innervation, immunity, vasculature, and subcutaneous fat homeostasis. Altogether, age-related alterations of skin lead to age-related skin fragility and diseases.
The dermis layer of the skin contains most of the skin’s specialized cells and structures. It synthesizes less collagen each year after the age of 20. For women, estrogen levels decrease after menopause. This leaves the skin drier, thinner, and not as taut as before.
Ultrasound therapy — long used for imaging and other treatments — is now helping to give people’s faces a lift. In fact, ultrasound imaging can be used to lift skin and promote collagen production. The noninvasive ultrasound energy is used to lift the eyebrow, neck and under-chin.
In a study conducted at Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University and published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology (Volume 62, issue 2, 2010), Dr. Alam Murad and five co-workers evaluated the efficacy of ultrasound skin tightening for brow-lift in the context of a procedure treating the full face and neck. The study shows clinically significant brow-lift 90 days after treatment.
Unlike laser treatments that simply target the outer layers of skin, ultrasound therapy bypasses the skin’s surface. It delivers the collagen stimulating ultrasound energy to the deepest layers. The ultrasound skin tightening device reaches 5 mm deep under the skin, penetrating into the second layer of muscles underneath the facial muscles. Lasers don’t even go that deep. Going deep into the skin matters because that’s where your skin makes new collagen.