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Laser Resurfacing: Turn Back the Hands Of Time
The anti-aging breakthrough of the decade is a skin-resurfacing treatment known as fractional CO2. Combining the effectiveness of traditional carbon dioxide lasers with a new application technique, it delivers powerful results without the traditionally harsh side effects and downtime.
How Does the Fractional CO2 Work?
The laser works by vaporizing the tissue and drilling microscopic beams into the epidermis. Traditional carbon dioxide lasers are the “gold standard” for treating deep fine lines and wrinkles, and acne scars. However, in the last 2-3 years there has been a real shift to fractionated lasers because the treatments involve less complications and downtime.
“Essentially, you are getting all the benefits of laser resurfacing, still the best way to remove wrinkles, but you’re getting it without the downtime and without the horrendous complication rate,” says David Goldberg, MD, director of Skin Laser and Surgery Specialists of New York and New Jersey and clinical professor of dermatology at the Mt. Sinai School of Medicine in New York City.
The Most Common Conditions the Fractional CO2 Addresses Are
- Fine lines and wrinkles of the face
- Scars, especially acne scars
- Eyelid laxity, lines around the eyes
- Pucker marks (smoker’s lines) and frown lines
- Brown spots and splotchy, uneven skin tone
What Will You Look Like Immediately After Treatment?
Patients typically experience swelling and a mild sunburn sensation for about 1-2 hours following the treatment. The first 3-5 days your face will have a red complexion with swelling. Typically a post-ablative kit is included to speed up healing by exfoliation of the dead skin cells and to enhance results. Mineral makeup can be used typically on day four to help cover any redness.
Due to the heating of dermal collagen during the laser treatment, tightening of skin laxity and improvement of rhytids (fine lines) continue for up to six months. The results of the treatments can be dramatic and with proper sun protection, effects are thought to last 8-10 years. Most effects of treatment become visible right away, whereas new collagen formation builds up gradually over time and results in continued smoothing.