Dear Dr. Brooks,
A co-worker mentioned Fraxel the other day. Can you please explain what Fraxel is? I’m interested in laser resurfacing to get rid of acne scars. Can it help improve the look of my skin? How many treatments would I need?
Still Having Acne in My 30’s!
Dear Still Having Acne in My 30’s,
Thank you so much for your question. Fraxel is a very diverse laser that can treat a variety of conditions and skin types, but it is very good for treating acne scars. In fact, I primarily use it for resurfacing both acne and surgical scars, but it’s great for reducing fine lines and wrinkles, too. It is also used for melasma, discoloration and age spots. It would absolutely make your skin look better. The advantage to Fraxel over other Erbium lasers, is that we can treat any skin type with minimal down time. The number of treatments depends on several factors: 1. Skin type (the darker the skin, generally the more treatments needed). An estimate would be 5-6 treatments for a person
with a darker complexion versus 3 treatments for someone with a lighter complexion. 2. What are we treating? If a patient has deep surgical or acne scars, they may need 1-2 more treatments than stated previously. 3. How aggressive can I be with treatments. This is very similar to point number 1; For a patient with very light skin, I can be every aggressive with my treatments. For example, if a patient with fair skin, blue eyes, blonde hair came for treatment of severe acne scarring I would be VERY aggressive in my settings (how much energy I use and how much surface area I am treating). Often, people feel because this is a non ablative laser, it will be pain free. There is discomfort with the Fraxel. I ask my patients to come in an hour before treatment to apply topical numbing cream on the area to be treated. Most of my patients tolerate the procedure very well.
– Dr. Brooks