Can a radiofrequency device reduce the pore size?

Lasers Med Sci. 2022 Mar;37(2):1203-1208. doi: 10.1007/s10103-021-03373-3. Epub 2021 Jul 12.


A facial pore is an empty funnel-shaped structure filled with cornified cylindrical plugs that can be cosmetically bothersome to some patients. In the previous report, the new unipolar radiofrequency (RF) device with a vacuum showed excellent skin tightening and patient satisfaction with improved pores. This study aims to confirm the treatment's efficacy with the new unipolar RF device on facial dilated pores by measuring quantitative sebum production differences and doing a histologic examination of pore size. Twelve patients who visited the dermatologic clinic without other underlying inflammatory facial skin diseases were included, regardless of the patient's age or sex. All patients received five successive treatments at 2-week intervals. We assessed all changes in sebum production levels, melanin index, erythema index before and after treatment, along with overall improvement (reduction of pore size, skin tone, skin texture, and skin laxity). In the five patients who agreed in advance, a biopsy of the pore lesion was taken before and 1 month after the last treatment with hematoxylin and eosin (H&E) staining, Masson's trichrome (M-T) staining, and Victoria blue staining. We observed a significant reduction of sebum production and melanin index after using the new unipolar RF device with a vacuum (sebum production, p = 0.011; MI, p = 0.004). In evaluating patient satisfaction for four categories, the patients showed a moderate to the excellent improvement of more than 50% in their condition except for skin tones. The average pore size decreased by 41.7% in the histological examination, from 64.98 to 37.86 μm. Additionally, we observed an overall decreased sebaceous gland in the dermis and the proliferation of dermal collagen fiber. The number of elastic bundles in the D-E junction was increased after treatment. The nonablative unipolar RF devices with a vacuum can improve dilated pores with a dual mechanism (collagen regeneration and reduction of sebum production), with much less pain than other RF devices.

Keywords: Dilated pore; Skin tightening; Unipolar radiofrequency.

MeSH terms

  • Cosmetic Techniques*
  • Face
  • Humans
  • Patient Satisfaction
  • Radio Waves
  • Skin
  • Skin Aging*