Optimizing safety and results with a popular second-generation radiofrequency (RF) microneedling device requires selecting the proper handpiece for each indication and using only authorized tips supplied by the device’s manufacturer. Doing so allows minimally invasive treatment of conditions ranging from pigmentation problems to scars and laxity.
VirtueRF by SHEnB (Seoul, South Korea) offers three handpieces – SmartRF, DeepRF and ExactRF – with a variety of needle configurations, energy levels and penetration depths. Selecting the right treatment tip is important, mentioned Hyun-Jo Kim, MD, director of CNP Skin Clinic in Asan-si, Chungcheongnam-do, South Korea. Due to facial contours, too large of a tip will result in inconsistent needle penetration and RF delivery, while too small of a tip can lengthen procedure times.
For patients who may experience upper eyelid sagging after undergoing botulinum injections for forehead wrinkles, the 12-pin DeepRF tip is particularly helpful, Dr. Kim noted. Recently, Dr. Kim treated a 60-year-old woman who had experienced eyelid ptosis following botulinum toxin injections performed elsewhere. “She appeared to require upper eyelid blepharoplasty,” he reported, “but expressed fear about surgery.”
After five sessions spaced two weeks apart with the 12-pin DeepRF the eylid ptosis improved significantly, Dr. Kim reported, and treatment prevented postinjection ptosis when he injected botulinum toxin.
He added that the tip’s cooling plate provides controlled cooling of the treatment area, which facilitates targeted, effective contouring while minimizing patient discomfort and downtime.
DeepRF’s 36-pin option is effective for improving facial and neck elasticity, enlarged pores and acne scars, Dr. Kim continued. “The design of the DeepRF handpiece allows for precise energy delivery and customization based on the specific treatment needs of each patient. This versatility makes it suitable for various facial concerns, including double-chin reduction, facial sagging and ptosis correction.”
To improve melasma, rosacea and facial skin texture, Dr. Kim uses the SmartRF tip. This tip is ideal for melasma, acne and wrinkles, he said, because its 36-pin configuration provides broader coverage of the treatment area, ensuring even, efficient distribution of RF energy. “This helps in effectively targeting a larger surface area.”
Determining when to use insulated or noninsulated needles depends on each patient’s clinical situation. Providers typically choose insulated needles for treatments requiring precise targeting, such as individual acne lesions or superficial pigmentation, Dr. Kim explained. “The insulation prevents excessive heat dissipation and focuses the energy on the intended target, minimizing the risk of collateral damage.”
A much larger safety concern is the use of counterfeit replacement VirtueRF tips, which are reaching the U.S. market through various channels. By using authentic treatment tips supplied by SHEnB, healthcare professionals can ensure patient safety, achieve desired treatment outcomes, receive manufacturer support and maintain compliance with industry regulations.
Any tips not supplied by Cartessa, the official U.S. distributor of genuine VirtueRF tips, are fake. To verify genuine tips, look for the manufacturer’s authorized blister packaging and the SHEnB label on the back. “For the best interests of both patients and practitioners,” Dr. Kim noted, “it is crucial to prioritize the use of authorized, genuine products.”