Ask a doctor

TCA Peels Before Fraxel Laser to Get Full Benefit?

I'm considering getting Fraxel on my face. At one clinic I was told that I should get a TCA peel 30% at least 20 peels each a week apart before doing Fraxel or I will not fully benefit from the treatment. Should I get it on my neck as well?  I was informed that since I'm olive-skinned, I may end up getting dark. I'm confused and need some clarification. All I need is eliminating fine wrinkles, spider veins, some discoloration and getting a dewy, glowy complexion. Thank you for your time. 

Doctor Answers (4)

TCA not needed with Fraxel

+3

A. Fraxel and TCA peels: I cannot see the need for that many TCA peels prior to a series of fraxel laser treatments. Sometimes I do combine other laser treatments with Fraxel in order to enhance results. Some examples of lasers used in combination with Fraxel are:

  • Vbeam pulsed dye or Gentle YAG 1064 for bood vessels or redness
  • GentleLase long pulse alexandrite or a q-switched alexandrite laser (ex: alex trivantage) to treat pigmented spots - freckles, melasma
  • Smoothbeam non-ablative laser for depressed scars

Additionally, I commonly use 90% TCA to the base of ice pick type acne scars (CROSS technique) immediately prior to Fraxel to help with these difficult to treat deep scars.

B. Darkness after Fraxel: Even with olive skin, the risk of darkness or what is called medically PIH - post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation - is very rare even after moderately aggressive Fraxel treatments. If you aer concerned about PIH or have experienced darkening after skin wounding previously, then discuss with your physician adjusting the settings of Fraxel laser to minimize the risk of PIH. PIH is also very treatable if it does occur.


Charlotte Dermatologist
4.5 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

TCA peels not needed as a pretreatment for Fraxel

+2

TCA peels are working in a similar manner as the Fraxel treatment. 20 peels spaced a week apart does not sound possible. Perhaps that is a typo. Typically our patients with olive skin will begin a home skin care regimen prior to having a Fraxel re:pair treatment. Some patients will undergo one or two superficial peels (glycolic) prior to the Fraxel treatment when they plan to have the treatment in a delayed fashion. I would discuss this further with your doctor to clarify the treatment plan.

Jennifer Parker Porter, MD
Chevy Chase Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Fraxel Laser and TCA Peels

+2

Hi Meeting Point,

That was meant to be 2 peels, not 20, correct?

You can get excellent results with Fraxel repair without having TCA peels. If your physician recommends two TCA peels for optimal results, like chicken soup, it can't hurt.

To minimize your chances of hyperpigmentation, wear sun block, wide brimmed hats, and avoid sun exposure religiously.

Enjoy your rejuvenated skin.

Dr. P

Michael A. Persky, MD
Los Angeles Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

You might also like...

You don't need TCA peels to benefit from Fraxel treatments

+1

"Shaving down the sides of the nose" is not a clear statement. Doing a septoplasty and turbinate reduction is for improving the nasal airway and is not a cosmetic operation. Doing procedures to change the external appearance of the nose (Rhinoplasty) is a different operation that may or may not be done at the same time as the septoplasty. It needs to be clear if you are asking for cosmetic surgery , and if so, what you want changed such as thinning or reducing the dorsum, refining the tip, making the nose smaller, etc.

Make sure you are clear on the plan before agreeing to surgery.

David Hansen, MD
Beverly Hills Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.