What is it?

Collagen induction therapy (CIT), also known as microneedling RF or skin needling, is a cosmetic procedure that involves repeatedly puncturing the skin with tiny, sterile needles (microneedling the skin). CIT should be separated from other contexts in which microneedling devices are used on the skin, e.g. transdermal drug delivery, vaccination. It is a technique for which research is ongoing but has been used for a number of skin problems including scarring and acne. Some studies have also shown that, when combined with Minoxidil treatment, microneedling is able to treat hair loss more effectively than Minoxidil treatment alone. Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) can be combined with collagen induction therapy treatment in a form of dermatologic autologous blood therapy. PRP is derived from the patient's own blood and may contain growth factors that increase collagen production. It can be applied topically to the entire treatment area during and after collagen induction therapy treatments or injected intradermally to scars. Efficacy of the combined treatments remains in question pending scientific studies.More serious safety concerns have been cited for these treatments, popularly known as vampire facials, when performed in non-medical settings by people untrained in infection control.

How does microneedling work?

Microneedling works by encouraging your skin to make more collagen. The idea is that pinpricks from the procedure cause slight injury to the skin and that the skin responds by making new collagen-rich tissue. This new skin tissue is, in turn, more even in tone and texture. It’s normal for the skin to lose collagen via age or injury. By encouraging the skin to make new tissue, there may be more collagen to help make the skin firmer, too.

In addition to facial concerns, microneedling is sometimes used to treat stretch marks in other areas of the body. One study found that microneedling was effective for stretch marks on the thighs and abdominal area when combined with fillers. Scarring on other body parts may also be treated with this procedure. However, microneedling is primarily used on the face.
You may notice skin irritation and redness within the first few days following the procedure. This is a natural response to the small “injuries” made by the needles in your skin. You can go back to work or school after the procedure if you’re comfortable. After microneedling, your skin works fairly quickly to rejuvenate new tissue. In theory, you should see results within a couple of weeks. To maintain the results of your treatment, you’ll need multiple sessions and perhaps other complementing treatments.