Types Of Acne Scars And Treatments To Reduce Scarring
- Red flat “scars” resulting from capillary expansion following any inflamed acne. Treated with Palomar IPL
- Shallow depressed scars resulting from tissue destruction following inflammation and infection. Treated with and/or Lux 1540 Fractional Laser< . Improved to a lesser degree with chemical peels
- Deep rolling or “boxcar” scars resulting from cystic acne. Treated with Lux 1540 Fractional Laser.
- Icepick scars resulting from deeply embedded cystic acne. Treated with Lux 1540 Fractional laser and/or dermal fillers.
- Keloid scars raised, firm “hypertrophic scars” are an occasional response to acne. Keloid scars are treated with cortisone injections to the scars.
What To Expect From The Results
Non-ablative laser treatments dont pose as great of a risk for side effects, but you may need multiple treatments to achieve your desired results. Ablative lasers, on the other hand, may correct your concerns in one treatment.
Individual results vary based on the extent of the initial concerns being treated. You can expect your results to last for several years once youre done with your treatment sessions. However, the results arent permanent. You may need to repeat the procedure at some point.
Dr Ulrik Knap About Treating Acne Scars With Fractional Co2 Laser
A fractional CO2 laser is one of my favorite methods for acne scarring, but seldom my only choice when treating acne scars. Usually, Id have to combine different techniques to achieve optimal results and the highest cure rate. Just as some of my good colleagues from around the world such as Dr. Davin Lim from Australia, I always start by improving the deepest scars and tethered scars. And when those deep scars have been raised to a certain depth, I can continue working on the more superficial scars and the skin texture with my fractional CO2 laser.
Planning of the treatment is important since several parameters have to be considered, including skin type and downtime. The CO2 laser is a very powerful tool when treating acne scars.
It makes the necessary stimulation of fibroblast in the dermis, which allows for new collagen production and remodeling of the scar tissue.
However, treating with a fractional CO2 laser is not necessarily the best option in all patients. In some patients, I might only use techniques such as TCA cross, punch excision or subcision. This all depends on the type of acne scars. Hence, the fractional CO2 laser is just one of the techniques I use to correct acne scars in my clinic.
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What Treatment Should I Have For My Acne Scars
The type of treatments, number of treatments, price and similar questions, unfortunately, cannot be answered by email but only at a physical consultation.
At the consultation, I make a careful and thorough analysis of my patients skin and acne scars. Evaluating and identifying the acne scar types correctly is important to achieve the highest success rate. This is a 3-dimensional procedure which requires that I can see the patient mimic and smile to identify any tethering of acne scars, touch the skin to identify deep fibrosis, and apply certain lightening on the skin to see all aspects and depths of the different acne scars.
Who Is The Ideal Candidate For A Laser Resurfacing For Acne Scars Procedure
The ideal candidate for an Acne Scar Treatment: Laser Resurfacing is in generally good health with acne scars or skin discoloration from acne. Acne Scar Treatment: Laser Resurfacing is not recommended for those with darker skin tones, certain skin types, a history of keloid scarring, active skin infections , or current acne breakouts.
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What Is Laser Resurfacing For Acne Scars
There are numerous treatment modalities for acne scarring. Laser resurfacing utilizes laser heat energy to destroy damaged skin cells causing scarring, and promote new, healthy skin. Depending on the severity of scarring, different lasers may be used.
Shallow to moderate acne scars may be treated with fractional non-ablative lasers, which are more gentle with less downtime. For deeper, pitted scarring, more invasive fractional ablative lasers will be needed for better results in fewer treatments, albeit with more recovery time.
Generally, lasers can be categorized as fractional lasers or non-fractional lasers , and ablative lasers versus non ablative lasers . Common laser treatments include CO2 Laser , Erbium lasers, and IPL.
Laser Acne Scar Treatment Procedure
Our laser skin treatments are similar to other forms of laser skin resurfacing. The lasers remove upper layers of damaged skin, and target tissue underneath the skin to produce newer, healthier cells to develop.
Before performing laser treatment, Dr. Passaretti or another member of our team can administer local anesthesia and sedation if needed. We will then use a hand-held laser device to direct a high-energy beam through the skin. The procedure will take between 30 minutes and two hours, depending on the size of the treatment area. Patients generally compare the sensation to a slight stinging, similar to a rubber band snapping on the skin. Many patients are able to achieve desired effects in one to two treatments. However, more procedures may be required for optimal results.
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Before And After Results
“The benefits are smoothing out texture and evening out skin tone to create a more unified canvas and clear complexion,” says Dr. Nussbaum.
After receiving acne scar laser treatment, most people describe it as feeling like a sunburn for a few days the skin is usually a little more red and swollenand occasionally it may be bruised,” says Dr. Chwalek.
While patients can expect to see improvement in redness, texture, and discoloration, the amount of improvement will depend entirely on the severity of the scars. Acne scar laser treatment results can vary widely. While mild scars may lessen in only one treatment, more severe scars may require weeks, or even several years of treatment to see desired results.
What To Expect Before The Laser Resurfacing Treatment
Before the scar laser treatment at Scar Healing Institute, the patients are asked to discuss their complete medical history with expert dermatologists. It is during this consultation that the doctors inform the patients about the procedure of the laser treatment for scars, its potential risks, and its outcomes.
The patients are suggested to:
Acne Scar Treatment: Co2 Laser Skin Resurfacing
As a laser and acne scar specialist, I have years of experience treating patients with severe acne scarring. One of my treatments, which are often combined with other methods, is fractional CO2 laser skin resurfacing.
In this short article, I’m going to tell you more about how to get rid of acne scars with fractional CO2 laser.
Risks And Side Effects
Like with any procedure, there are some possible risks and side effects as a result of treating acne scar conditions with lasers. Your side effects will depend on a number of factors, including the type of laser used in the procedure, the number of treatments required , and your specific skin type.
Common side effects include redness, swelling, and slight pain at the treated area. While pain may just last 1-2 hours at most, redness and slight swelling can continue for up to 10 days after the treatment.
Other risks of these procedures include infection and hyperpigmentation, although these are mostly preventable and rely on the expertise and skill of your doctor.
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What Causes An Acne Scar
Your acne scarring is a result of tissue destruction. Infection that causes inflamed acne destroys that area of skin. Everyone has different response to acne inflammation. Some people scar deeply and others experience only faint scars that are more easily treated. Early treatment of acne will help prevent scarring.
You may have redness from acne that remains obvious for a long time. Redness can last up to a year if untreated. The pulsed light systems shrink and eliminate many of the broken capillaries responsible for this redness.
Keep Your Expectations In Check
Lasers are powerful and can produce amazing results, but they arent miracle machines. Depending on your specific skin condition and the kind of treatments you get, results can take time, and repeat sessions may be necessary, even with the most aggressive laser.
Anything that involves epithelial cells, like in your skin, nails, and hair, is going to require retreatment. That would be like having the best gel manicure of your life youre still going to need a new one . Or the best hair colorist in the world youre still going to get roots. These epithelial cells will always turn over. Whatever you do is going to require maintenance at home in your daily routine. And while your results may last several years, per the ABPS, theyre not permanent.
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What Is The Laser Resurfacing Process
The process of laser acne scar removal requires professional dermatologists to use their expertise and skills to deliver optimal results to the patients. The treatment process of laser treatment involves the following step:
Laser treatment for acne scars provides you with the best treatment to treat the acne scars, especially when it is performed by expert dermatologists in California. The laser resurfacing for acne scars provides the patients with the latest treatment to experience visible improvement of their scars.
The Days After Co2 Laser Skin Resurfacing
In a nutshell:
As directed, I washed my face 3 times a day with Alastin Gentle Cleanser then applied Alastin Skin Nectar followed by Alastin Soothe + Protect Recovery Balm, to keep my skin moist while healing.
Even with all the moisturizer, my skin felt very dry and rough, somewhat like coarse sandpaper .
Swelling went down each day and was followed by eventual peeling or flaking of the outer skin layer, revealing fresher looking skin.
The first day after the treatment my skin was very red and felt warm throughout the day. I was also very swollen and felt especially puffy around my eyes. I focused on keeping my face constantly moisturized.
Tip: Sleep with a cover over your pillowcase to protect from all the moisturizer.
I experienced redness and noticed more brown spots surfacing on Day 2. It was a full 48 hours before I started seeing slight signs of peeling and feeling itchy for the first time. That night I woke up in the middle of the night and felt even itchier. I took a Tylenol PM and applied more Soothe + Protect Recovery Balm to keep my face moist and was able to fall back asleep.
The photos in the natural daylight better show the rough texture and brown spots
On Friday , I woke up with very tight skin. I noticed my sun spots were much lighter than before. It felt like the new skin I was seeing was glowing!
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Laser Treatment For Acne Scars Can Provide Smoother Healthier Skinin Darien
As a board-certified Connecticut plastic surgeon Dr. David Passaretti understands that acne scars can be a major concern, and can greatly affect your self-esteem. He offers advanced laser treatment to improve the appearance of skin damaged by acne. Using a high-energy laser, Dr. Passaretti can reduce and eliminate the appearance of scars, including discoloration and uneven skin texture. To learn more about laser treatment for acne scars at our Darien, CT, practice, contact our office today.
How To Prepare For Laser Skin Resurfacing
To get the best results from laser skin resurfacing, its important to do some things to prepare your skin before your procedure. Its also vital to avoid certain things leading up to your procedure to protect your skin. Your dermatologist will give you instructions on how to care for your skin before your procedure.
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Ablative Lasers For Acne Scars:
Ablative lasersâlike CO2 and er:YAGâdeliver an intense wavelength of light to remove the outer layers of skin while also heating the under layers of the skin, says dermatologist Arash Akhavan, MD. This process completely injures and resurfaces the skin, resulting in the presence of new, healthy tissue. Down time associated with ablative lasers is about two weeks, says Dr. Akhavan, adding that “severe scabbing will occur during these two weeks, and patients should completely limit sun exposure and physical activity as this could harm the healing process.
Bottom line: These lasers are incredibly powerful and produce great results, especially for those with atrophic acne scarring, but need to be used by experienced medical professionals only.
Heres My Co2 Laser Skin Resurfacing Day
Prior to my treatment, I was instructed to visit my local pharmacy and pick up a few prescriptions. The prescriptions included a painkiller, a sedative, and an antibiotic. I have a relatively high pain tolerance and have experienced nausea with painkillers in the past, so I requested prescription strength Tylenol with Codeine instead. An hour before my treatment, the laser nurse applied numbing cream that covered my face and I took the medications for pain and the sedative. I also purchased an Alastin recovery kit that was recommended for post-care.
Here in my before photo you can see the freckles that I hoped the CO2 Laser would reduce the appearance of.
The actual procedure itself took less than 30 minutes. It was not painful and I only experienced mild discomfort around the edges of my face, which seemed to be more sensitive . If I had elected for a more intensive treatment there is a chance it might have hurt a bit more than it did which again, was surprisingly minimal. However, I also did not take the pain killer that is typically prescribed. With the prescription strength Tylenol, the treatment wasnt entirely pain free, but it felt hardly noticeable.
Note: The laser nurse used settings based on my skin type and my desired results.
Once I arrived home, I used a cool compress about every 30 to 90 minutes. I was instructed not to wash my face until morning, and re-apply the recovery balm anytime I felt dry or tight.
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How To Find A Provider
Laser treatment is a simple and effective way to reduce the appearance of acne scars.
Speaking with a board-certified dermatologist is the first step to finding out if this treatment is right for you. If youre concerned about your acne scars and dont already have a dermatologist, you can view doctors in your area through the Healthline FindCare tool. You may want to shop around and speak to different providers to figure out which treatment option is right for you and your budget.
Here are some links for finding a certified provider in your area:
What Is The Recovery Time For Laser Acne Scar Removal
While you can resume normal activities almost immediately, recovery time can last as little as a week or as long as a few weeks it all depends on how intensive the treatment is. The skin on your face can stay pink for a few months. It is recommended that you stay out of the sun as much as possible during recovery time.
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What Does Your Face Look Like After Laser Resurfacing
After the laser treatment for scars the patients might experience some changes on their face, which are temporary, including:
How Can You Treat Rolling Scars And Prevent Them From Worsening
Scars are created when the healing process produces excessive amounts of collagen, which causes the skin to bunch up and form depressions. These scars typically have smooth, defined edges and can be quite noticeable.
Fortunately, several treatments can help improve the appearance of rolling scarring. Over-the-counter products containing silicone may help smooth out the scars for milder cases. For more severe cases, dermatologists may recommend dermal fillers or Laser resurfacing. In addition, it is important to take steps to prevent scars from worsening.
This includes avoiding picking at pimples and using sunscreen to protect the skin from further damage. With the right treatment, it is possible to reduce the appearance of rolling scars and improve the quality of your skin.
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Side Effects And Duration
Healing usually takes between 3 and 10 days. As a general rule, the bigger the treatment area and the deeper the laser, the longer the recovery time. Recovery from ablative laser treatment, for example, may take up to three weeks.
During recovery, your skin may be extremely red and scab over. Slight peeling will occur. You can use ice packs to help reduce any swelling.
While you dont need to be at home during the entire recovery process, youll want to avoid known areas of germs such as the gym that could increase your risk of infection.