Description

Skin resurfacing is used for the treatment of wrinkles, solar lentigenes, sun damage, scars (acne scars), actinic keratosis and telangiectasias (spider veins), a symptom of ataxia telangiec tasia. Laser skin resurfacing performs exceptionally well with the treatment of deep rhytides, sun damage and age spots. Through the heating of the deep dermis, fibroblasts are stimulated to form new collagen and elastin helping to bring increased turgor and thickness to the skin.

When compared to a chemical peel or dermabrasion, laser skin resurfacing allows the surgeon to customize the surgery not only for each patient but also to each area of the face.

The lasers remove skin very precisely, layer by layer, using very short pulsed light energy or continuous light beams that are delivered in a scanning pattern to precisely remove thin layers of skin with minimal heat damage to the surrounding structures.

Skin resurfacing can also be performed with a plasma based device, but its superiority to laser based devices remains an open question.

Fractional photothermolysis provides similar results to carbon dioxide laser resurfacing without risk of scarring or significant downtime. Fractional photothermolysis devices on the market include Fraxel Laser, Pixel, Lux1540 and Affirm.

Laser skin resurfacing can be combined with liposuction when this is done to remove excess fat from the chin and jaw area. The skin may be wrinkled after fat is removed and laser resurfacing can help tighten and smooth over the new contours.

Complications

  • Acneiform eruptions (1.87%)
  • Herpes simplex virus outbreaks (1.77%).
  • CO2 laser resurfacing has an increased risk of hypo pigmentation and scarring when compared to the erbium lasers. This is due to the high degree of coagulation and thus heat production that occurs as a nature of the CO2 wavelength. Both Erbium and CO2 fractional systems have a better safety profile than lasers of the past.

    Cost

    Laser resurfacing surgery costs from US$ 1500 - US$ 6500.
    The surgical procedure for laser resurfacing takes 1 to 1.5 hours.


    This page has been updated on the 2017-12-18.