I've seen before and after photos of laser treatments that had great results on stretch marks and saggy skin. I just don't know what laser treatments they were! I would like to find out so I could find a doctor in my area who offers those typical treatments. Thanks so much for your time!
Laser Resurfacing Stretch Marks - What Works?
Doctor Answers (7)
Stretchmark laser treatment
Although there is no technology or cream that will completely erase stretch marks, there are options available to improve the appearance of stretch marks. For example, red stretch marks are treatable with pulsed dye lasers to resolve the redness associated with these newer lesions. Current research supports that early treatment may enhance the outcomes for both color and texture improvement.
For brown stretch marks, treatments with Q-Switched Yag lasers offer dramatic results. For older, more mature stretch marks, the Excimer laser is used to restore pigment that has been lost by blending in the stretch marks to match the surrounding skin. Unfortunately, these treatments are quite tedious and offer only temporary results when treating hypopigmented (white) stretch marks.
Our facility incorporates the Aramis Quantel laser for collagen stimulation to improve the appearance and texture of the stretch marks.
In some situations, surgical intervention may be more appropriate for those patients that present with very large lesions depending on the location of the stretch marks. However, when surgery is not appropriate or not an option that a patient would like to consider, class IV medical lasers provide a good alternative.
If a patient does not have realistic expectations, then lasers are not the best option. If one's goal is improvement, then laser treatments for stretch marks is a good treatment to consider.
Stretch marks, No good treatment
I agree that there is no "good" treatment to repair stretch marks. The red color of new stretch marks can be reduced with pulse dye lasers. Surgical Tummy tuck can cut out some of the marks on the abdomen. There are no effective creams.
Laser treatments help but do not eliminate stretch marks
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Stretch marks can be improved by laser treatments but not eliminated
To date, no laser treatment (or any treatment for that matter) has yet been shown to eliminate or cure stretch marks. Laser resurfacing can make some improvement in the appearance of white or mature stretch marks and pulsed dye or photoselective laser light treatments can reduce the redness of new or early stretch marks.
What laser treatment works well for stretch marks?
Many treatments for stretch marks can improve their appearance, but none so far have been able to remove them completely.
If stretch marks are still fresh, that is red or violet in color, topical treatment with a tretinoin or tazarotene cream might be sufficient for treatment.
Intense pulsed light has been shown to work in treating mature stretch marks by increasing collagen production in the dermis.
Fractional laser resurfacing works by removing columns of tissue in the areas treated, which stimulates both the contraction of the tissue and deposition of new collagen.
The excimer laser works by repigmenting the striae but does not improve the loss of collagen in the area.
Laser resurfacing for stretch marks
Stretch marks are better treated when they are "fresh" or red- this can be addressed with either a light device or a topical cream. When they are no longer red (darker or lighter streaks in the skin) then treatments are geared towards lessening their appearance. Stretch marks are caused by the breaking of elastin/collagen in the skin from expansion of the skin. To lessen the appearance of older stretch marks, the skin is re-wounded using an ablative laser technique (usually a pixelated/fraxilated device). The body then heals the wounds from the inside out, depositing collagen and elastin to fill in what was not there. The stretch marks never disappear all together, and any pictures showing such are not completely accurate. Suspicion should be raised as to the motive of such pictures.
Laser for stretch mark removal
If you are looking for laser treatment of stretch marks the Fraxel Re Store and SmartXide Dot treatments seem to be giving the best results. However, you should realize that neither treatment is 100 % successful and you should only expect an improvement not a cure.
I would also consider surgery such as a tummy tuck since that would address both your sagging skin issue and the stretch marks. I would recommend consulting a board certified plastic surgeon.
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.