Fractional Laser Resurfacing – Savior of Acne Scars

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The most feared and worst complication of acne is the permanent scarring which can be disfiguring and can even affect one’s self esteem. Acne scarring is notoriously difficult to treat. Fortunately, advances in technology in the past few years have allowed the aesthetic physician tackle this problem much more effectively.

Ablative Laser Resurfacing: Effective but horrifying

In the not too distant past, the only way to improve the scars was to undergo an ablative laser resurfacing. (e.g. Erbium laser). In simple terms, the procedure involved using a laser to vaporize the entire top layers of the skin. The procedure was extremely painful – even needing general anesthesia, had a high rate of complications especially in Asians, and had a downtime of about a month!

Non-Ablative Lasers: No down time but little results

Needless to say, ablative laser resurfacing was not the most popular procedure. Then came the non-ablative lasers. This involved using lasers to heat up the dermis and stimulate collagen in hope of improving the scars.

There was no down time, but unfortunately, many sessions were needed, results were modest at best, and also very variable.

Fractional Lasers: A good balance

In 2001, scientists at Fraxel® pioneered the science of fractional photothermolysis, which revolutionalized acne scar treatment.

This approach to acne scarring strikes a balance between the former 2 predecessors: the laser creates microscopic columns of thermal damage in the skin, very much like punching little holes in the skin. This allows new collagen to form, and also minimize downtime (expect redness for a few days, but no clinical downtime) and complications.

Results are excellent, and the treatment proved to be safe even for dark Asian skin!
Just 8 years after introduction, fractional laser treatment is now the gold standard for treating acne scars. Significant improvements in acne scars are seen usually with 3 to 5 treatments.

Choose the Right Laser


After the original Fraxel® laser, many other laser companies have come up with their own fractional lasers, flooding the market and again making it very confusing for the patient (and doctor!)

Fractional lasers using CO2 (e.g. eCo laser) have also proved to be very efficacious for treating acne scars, although the downtime may be slightly more prolonged compared to the Fraxel® laser.

Not all fractional lasers are created equal, so it is important to find a doctor you trust when getting your acne scars treated, and to find out more from him/ her before getting the procedure done!

7 COMMENTS

  1. Hi Dr Siew Tuck Wah ,
    This was a wonderful information on this page about the types-of acne scars in summer season with the outstanding steps to eliminate the acne scars from the Sensitive skin of body in a seven days by using the hemp seed oil with the best moisturizer cream daily according to the required period of a time after the recommendations of a doctor and also follow the instructions of a doctor which help you to remove this kind of acne scars skin disease with the use of best skin moisturizer cream ,My suggestion is you must go to a doctor one time in a week for starting of proper treatment of eliminating acne scars with the applying of hemp seed oil appeared on the Sensitive skin of body in a summer season due to the effect of sun rays,keep it in your mind don’t work in the light of sun because the heat of sun with the dust particles in sun rays increase the acne scars and cracks with lines on the skin due to the demaged of upper skin layers cells after the working of some time you notice the color of skin become black and cracks with lines are increased on the Sensitive skin of a body this is also a effect of skin cancer . So take care of skin and avoid to work in a light of sun . you also use hibiscus face mask on the face if necessary to work in the light of sun and also use carrot in the food salad .
    Thanks.

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