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Launched in the UK in 2009, the Pellevé™ radiofrequency (RF) Wrinkle Reduction System is manufactured by Ellman International and distributed in the UK by Sigmacon Ltd.
It claims to be a “revolutionary skin tightening system that safely treats wrinkles on the face without surgery” using heat from radiowave energy in an almost painless treatment, with results noticeable after a single session.
The Pellevé Wrinkle Reduction System precisely delivers energy to the dermal tissue using advanced radiowave technology to induce collagen contraction without damaging the epidermis. The result is noticeable improvement in skin quality and appearance.
Pellevé is indicated for the cosmetic correction of mild to moderate facial wrinkles for skin phototypes I-IV. It can be used to treat the skin on the face, including the eye area.
Pellevé uses a patented 4.0 MHz radiowave technology. (This compares to 1MHz with Elos™ devices from Syneron, 6 – 6.78MHz with mono-polar RF from Thermage™ or 40MHz with bi-polar RF from Accent™.)
Pellevé uses GlideSafe™ handpieces to deliver the radiowaves; these feature a sensor designed to stop the energy flow when the device senses a loss of contact with the skin, providing a safer treatment.
The GlideSafe handpieces are available in four different sizes, 7.5mm, 10mm, 15mm and 20mm, to allow the practitioner to choose the most suitable size for the area being treated. Different sized handpieces may be used during a treatment session to access different areas of the face more effectively.
Pellevé uses radiofrequency waves to slowly penetrate into the deep layers of skin and heat the area whilst protecting the epidermis or outer layer of skin. The heat generated causes the collagen fibres in the skin to contract and tighten, as well as stimulating the production of new collagen, helping to improve the look and feel of the treated area.
A full face Pellevé treatment takes approximately 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on the area being treated.
The practitioner will apply a treatment gel to the skin on your face once cleaned and then move the Pellevé handpiece over it, firing the RF energy until the right temperature is achieved. This is done by you signalling that you feel the warming sensation, whereupon the practitioner will move on to treat the next area until treatment is completed. An infrared thermometer may also be used to test the skin temperature is optimal before moving on to treat another area.
Because no topical or local anaesthetic is required, your face will not feel numb, this allows you to work with the practitioner to describe the depth of the heating sensation you are feeling during each stage of the treatment to ensure the best results.
A cooling gel pack or mask may be applied to your face afterwards.
It was awarded a European CE Mark in 2005.
American FDA approval was granted for the treatment of mild to moderate wrinkles on the face only, including the eye area in 2009.
Trained members of the medical profession only.
The Pellevé device doesn’t currently come under current Care Quality Commission legislation and can be used by a trained aesthetician with medical supervision.
Pellevé is used to treat the skin on the face, including the area around the eyes.
It can be used to target:
Clinical trials are ongoing for its use on the neck and body to obtain American FDA approval.
According to the manufacturer your skin will feel firmer and tighter straight after just a single one-hour treatment, with results improving over the following weeks, said to last up to six months. More sessions may produce a longer lasting effect.
You will feel a deep warming sensation each time the Pellevé handpiece targets an area being treated, which depending on your pain sensitivities may feel uncomfortable, but most people describe the procedure as virtually painless.
You can return to your normal activities or go back to work straight after the treatment, as well as applying make-up. Although you may notice some mild swelling and redness right after the treatment; this usually resolves within 2 to 24 hours.
As long as you are generally healthy and don’t have any skin diseases or infections in the area treated, there are few medical reasons why patients should not undergo this treatment.
Although there is no evidence that this treatment is harmful for pregnant women, you would generally be advised to wait until after you have given birth before embarking upon a course of treatment.
More importantly, people with electrical devices e.g., pacemakers, or metal implants e.g., artificial metal hip joints, heart valves or dental plates, cannot be treated because RF current flowing through the body may interfere with these devices or heat up metal implants, which could be dangerous.
Also, until further studies have been carried out it is advisable not to have treatment in an area previously treated with dermal filler products, such as collagen.
A treatment session can be expected to last between half and one hour.
More than one treatment session, usually two or three spaced one month apart, and ongoing maintenance treatments over the years are recommended practitioners, depending on your age and skin tone.
Private costs for Pellevé treatments depend on the area(s) being treated and the skill of the practitioner and can start from approximately £400 per treatment session.
Nonsurgical tightening of skin laxity: a new radiofrequency approach.
Rusciani A, Curinga G, Menichini G, Alfano C, Rusciani L.
J Drugs Dermatol. 2007;6(4):381-386.
In this study 93 patients were followed for 6 months after a single Pellevé™ treatment. Three independent, blinded assessors (two facial plastic surgeons and one dermatologic surgeon) rated the improvement over baseline for each time frame.
The study showed that with a single Pellevé™ treatment, over 87% of the patients experienced an improvement in skin laxity and fewer overall facial wrinkles at six months.