Elos stands for electro-optical synergy and is a multi-application cosmetic technology that is used for facial rejuvenation, treating brown or red spots, and permanently removing hair, among other applications. Elos combines both optical and electrical energies to achieve its effect. The electrical energy is conducted (or bipolar) radiofrequency, the same form of energy that has been used in cosmetic and therapeutic ablation therapy for years. The optical energy of Elos can be of either the laser or regular variety. Elos is a relatively new technology—the company that owns the rights to the technology is Syneron which was founded in 2000 and distributes the Aurora Elos delivery system.
Elos has a broad range of applications including (but not limited to):
- Benign vascular lesions
- Excessive hair growth, as can other lasers
- Laser assisted lipolysis
- Leg veins
- Pigment irregularities
- Thigh circumference reduction
While Elos has a wide range of applications the technology is better applied to some conditions rather than others. When Elos is applied to skin discoloration, the light energy is absorbed by chromophores, which diminish pigmented areas in both the deep dermal and epidermal areas. In a double blind clinical study, 108 patients received five full face treatments of Elos every three weeks. All skin satisfaction and patient satisfaction measurements improved compared to a sham procedure (simple light and sound).
Acne is one of the most common conditions for which dermatologists and cosmetic surgeons are consulted. In treating acne, Elos merges blue light with radiofrequency energy. Limited reported studies have shown Elos to be an effective treatment for acne. This technology provides between 38% and 50% reduction in various lesions including comedones, excess sebum, inflammation and related acnes disorders.
When it comes to cosmetic procedures, people with light and dark skin tones usually run into separate difficulties. Few hair removal techniques are well suited to removing light hair colors against light skin tones. Alternatively, skin rejuvenation treatments are not nearly as effective in patients with darker skin tones. Elos has been successfully applied to patients of all skin tones. Moreover, Asian skin usually requires different cosmetic treatment approaches different then Caucasian skin, yet Elos technology is able to satisfactorily treat various skin conditions in Asian patients.
While Elos is generally effective, the system is also relatively safe. This safety comes from its unique design and features. For example, the sapphire treatment tip on the Elos machine directs RF energy into the deep dermal layer and away from the epidermis. This means results are longer lasting, but the procedure itself is safer since it is the epidermis that is most likely to sustain damage. The various Elos devices provide real-time temperature feedback which allows the treating physician to constantly monitor for temperature spikes. There is also an energy pulse avoidance system which protects against uncoupled electrodes.
A visit to the Syneron website shows the many different Elos machines available for professional use. Most practitioners will only provide a handful of the Elos techniques available. Check with your local cosmetic clinic or dermatologist to determine which Elos technologies and procedures that they offer.