Dermatologic surgery : official publication for American Society for Dermatologic Surgery [et al.]

Objective evaluation of the clinical efficacy of fractional radiofrequency treatment for acne scars and enlarged pores in Asian skin.

PMID 25099295


Ablative fractional lasers can effectively treat acne scars and enlarged pores, but cause considerable pain and downtime for patients, as well as potentially causing postinflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH), especially in Asian skin. To evaluate the efficacy of a novel bipolar radiofrequency (RF)-based fractional device to treat acne scars and enlarged pores in Asians with objective measurements and histologic assessments. Thirty-one Korean patients with acne scars and enlarged pores received 4 consecutive fractional RF treatments at 3-week intervals. Outcome assessments included photography, global evaluation by investigators in a blind manner, patient assessment, objective biophysical measurements of elasticity and color, and histological changes compared with untreated lesions. Follow-up assessments by physicians 3 months after the last treatment revealed that patients showed clinical improvement. Patient self-assessments paralleled physicians' assessments. Objective biophysical measurements showed significant improvements in elasticity (R2, R5, and R7) and the melanin/erythema index, together with increases in the levels of procollagen Types I and III, as well as elastin. There were no cases of PIH, and adverse events were limited to mild ones. Fractional bipolar RF provides clinical efficacy with safety in acne scars and enlarged pores through dermal matrix remodeling combined with tolerable epidermal ablation.