BOSTON (FRONTLINE MEDICAL NEWS) A more aggressive approach with fractional radiofrequency treatment of photodamaged facial skin in a single treatment achieved the same results as multiple treatments, with no increase in adverse events, in a small study.

“All of these nonablative fractional devices that are out there [are] generally dependent on multiple treatments; they’re fractional by their very nature, so you have to treat people three, five [or more] times,” Dr. David J. Goldberg, a dermatologist in group practice in New York and New Jersey, said in an interview at the annual meeting of the American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery.

In the study of 25 individuals with photodamaged skin, “we took a somewhat more aggressive approach, and wanted to see what would happen after just one treatment,” Dr. Goldberg explained, adding that historically, single-treatment approaches with conventional fractional radiofrequency (RF) treatments cover only about 10% of photodamaged skin.

All patients were treated in his group practice at an energy setting of 60 mJ/pin using the Fractora RF device, a 60-pin bipolar RF device manufactured by InMode. Dr. Goldberg and his coinvestigators collected data on skin texture (or roughness), photodamage, wrinkling, tone, luminosity, and overall quality at baseline and 30, 60, 90, and 180 days after treatment.

All patients had their entire face treated during the single session, with downtime due to erythema lasting 3-4 days in all cases. By the end of day 4, all subjects were satisfied enough with the results that they were able to resume normal daily routines. Furthermore, all subjects showed signs of improvement after undergoing one treatment, and there were no adverse reactions, Dr. Goldberg said.

After a single treatment, skin tone improvement was evident in 40% of patients and improvements in texture, photodamage, and wrinkling were evident in 50% of subjects. For most patients, these improvements were seen between 60 and 90 days after treatment. However, some patients saw improvements in skin luminosity, texture, tone, and overall quality as early as the 30-day follow-up, according to Dr. Goldberg. Skin roughness improved by a “statistically significant” margin at 60- and 90-day follow-up, compared with baseline, and continued to improve through the 180-day follow-up.

“Patients don’t want to come in five times for treatment,” he said. “You can treat them safely and effectively with just one treatment by being just a little bit more aggressive.”

Dr. Goldberg disclosed speaking, consulting, and honoraria relationships with Cutera, as well as consulting and honoraria relationships with Cutera, InMode, Endymed and Aerolase.