Facts About Fractional Laser Resurfacing

Fractional laser resurfacing is fast becoming the procedure of choice to reverse the signs of aged skin. There are several laser devices which are available today which can be used for fractional resurfacing.

The essential premise of this technology is that unlike previous lasers, the latest generation of lasers can treat selective areas of the skin without damaging the nearby skin.

Although different lasers vary in their depth of skin penetration, the overall results of all these latest lasers are comparable.

In general, lasers which have a shallower depth of skin penetration are less painful, but lasers which penetrate the skin deeper are more effective and produce a longer lasting effect.

It does not matter which laser is used to resurface the skin, all of them cause only a temporary reversal of the aged skin. There is no permanent treatment that can reverse the signs of aging.

The advantages of fractional skin surfacing include:

- remove pigmented spots

- reduce the signs of melasma (pregnancy induced skin rash)

- improve skin texture

- reduce the skin pores sizes

- erase the wrinkles around the eyes, nose

- diminish the acne scars

- even out the traumatic scars

- reduced incidence of complications

- less downtime

All fractional lasers work in a similar way. The lasers generate linear rays which are known as microthermal treatment zones. The laser generates heat which fragments the old skin pigmented cells. The selective beam of laser only affects the abnormal skin and leaves the surrounding tissues and skin unaffected. When done properly, fractional skin resurfacing creates a new healthier, smoother and younger looking skin with none or minimal skin imperfections

The currently available fractional laser devices include:

- Fraxel®,

- ActiveFXTM

- Lux 1540TM

- AffirmTM,

- ProFractionalTM

All these lasers target between 20%-25% of the skin's surface. Because of this, 4-6 treatment sessions are typically required to obtain optimal results. When there us severe scarring (either from acne or trauma), more sessions may be required.

Immediately following treatment with fractional skin resurfacing, one will notice that the skin is:

- red

- slightly swollen

- mildly bruised

These minor side effects are common with all fractional lasers such as Fraxel®, ActiveFXTM, Lux 1540TM, AffirmTM, and ProFractionalTM.

These minor side effects usually last a few hours and in the rare case may last for up to 48 hours.

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