Radiofrequency Subcision Successful for the Treatment of Acne Scars

Acne scarring on cheek
Acne scarring on cheek
The effectiveness of endo-radiofrequency subcision for the treatment of acne scars is reported.

The efficacy of radiofrequency subcision for the treatment of acne scars found support in data from a case series study published in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology.

Adult patients with atrophic acne scars were enrolled from a dermatology clinic in Tehran, Iran. Patients with active acne lesions were excluded. Each patient underwent 1 session of endo-radiofrequency (endo-RF) subcision with a Flex RF probe. Treatment results were evaluated at 6 months follow-up using skin ultrasonography, which captures the thickness and density of the epidermis and dermis. Patient satisfaction was assessed at 3 and 6 months.

A total of 9 patients were enrolled, of whom 4 were men and 5 were women; mean age was 35 years. Endo-RF was associated with a significant reduction in the number of fine pores (0.80 ± 0.09 to 0.55 ± 0.04), large pores (0.60 ± 0.09 to 0.41 ± 0.03), and acne spots (0.48 ± 0.07 to 0.30 ± 0.02) between baseline and 6 months (all P <.05). The density and thickness of the epidermis and dermis also increased substantially during follow-up. Specifically, the density and thickness of the dermis increased 45.04 ± 20.39% and 36.11 ± 13.50%, respectively, from baseline to 6 months (both P <.05). Similarly, the epidermis density increased 38.01 ± 14.42% and the epidermis thickness increased 48.24 ± 12.39% (both P<.05), the researchers noted. Side effects included mild edema and erythema, which resolved without treatment. The majority (75%) of patients were “highly satisfied” with treatment results; the remaining 25% reported “moderate” satisfaction.

These data suggest to the investigators that endo-RF subcision effectively reduces the appearance of acne scars after just 1 treatment session. This treatment modality also reduced the number of fine and large pores and increased the density and thickness of the dermis and epidermis, with only mild side effects, they noted.


Nilforoushzadeh MA, Heidari-Kharaji M, Fakhim T, et al. Radiofrequency subcision for acne scars treatment: a case series study. J Cosmet Dermatol. Published June 29, 2022. doi:10.1111/jocd.15195