Fraxel Repair for Acne Scars - Birmingham, MI

I had bad acne when I was a teenager that resulted...

I had bad acne when I was a teenager that resulted in acne scars. They have always really bothered me but much more so lately. As I'm getting older they seem to be getting worse and my Dr said that they would continue to get worse as the skin loses elasticity as you get older. I've done microdermabrasion, chemical peels and light therapies in the past. All make my skin look a little nicer in the short term but no real long term results for the scaring. I finally decided to go for the fraxel repair. My best friend knows a girl who worked as a fraxel sales rep for our area and asked her who the best Dr to go to for it was. She referred me to Dr. Charles Boyd in Birmingham. Coincidentally, I knew someone who went to him for fillers and she looks amazing. So I went for it. During my consultation I asked if I was going to be bloody like some of the pictures I'd seen online and he said no that I would be really sunburned looking afterwards. NOT TRUE! I went in for the procedure and they applied a numbing cream, asked if I had a driver so I could take a valium- um no? Didn't know I was supposed to... The procedure felt like hot knives ripping through my skin. The pain was so intense I was shaking and crying by the time it was done. It smelled like burning skin! I actually asked if my skin was burned off! I had no local anesthetic, which from what I'm reading now is crazy! I couldn't believe my face when I was done. I was bloody and swollen. I was so upset, I had to go home to my 2 young children like this. I was not prepared for this at all. The Dr had said I would just be really red and there are different kinds of fraxel and the pictures I must have seen were probably from the fully ablative laser that takes off the whole outer layer of skin- the kind done in the operating room. There was a huge misunderstanding there. Afterwards I wasn't in any pain, I slept elevated for three nights and never had too much swelling. I cleaned with hydrogen peroxide every few hours and applied tons of Aquaphor. A side note about hydrogen peroxide- it bleaches your skin. I had a false sense of improvement because of this. Once I stopped using the peroxide my skin became more red. By day 4 it started to itch pretty bad, I couldn't sleep at all so day 5 I took Benadryl before going to bed and either that helped the itching or just knocked me out enough where I didn't notice it! I think a little of both. My biggest concern are the lines on my face. They said I'd be pink in 5-7 days but what they didn't mention was that it would not be an even pink like I expected. I look blotchy, red in some areas and white in others. When I called to express this concern they assured me it would start to blend in 2 weeks or so- 2 weeks?? I look ridiculous. I could handle being pink but having the distinct lines of the laser tracks looks terrible. I can't pull this off as a little sunburn. Good thing I'm great with makeup. I'm just praying that they start to go away soon. Currently I'm on day 8 and my skin is much less itchy and irritated. I feel depressed because of the weird lines and unevenness of my skin. I just wish I was a more even pink. I can cover it with makeup but I need kind of a lot. I got a color-correcting CC cream by Stila and is amazing and I wear it around the house. It comes out green but blends into my skin and works pretty good. When I need to go out I use Dior Airflash foundation- its an airbrush foundation- expensive but amazing! When I have makeup on my skin actually looks pretty good- pretty smooth but I know there is still some micro swelling and that the scars will come back when that it all gone. As of now I would say I see am 80% improvement in the scarring but like I said I'm not counting on that being the end result. I would be happy if I get a 50% improvement though- if thats the case then I would say this horrible experience will have been worth it.

2 weeks post

I'm not seeing much improvement- the scars are a little shallower but my skin is still a little swollen so I think that's why- overall skin condition seems worse than before procedure....
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How are the lines (track marks?) under your eye? I STILL have track marks under my left eye and had a Fraxel Re:Pair treatment done two years ago for acne scarring...absolute waste of money for me. :(
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I'm sorry you had such a bad fraxel experience. If you click on my profile you can see my awful experience with it also.....YEARS ago. I had hoped it would have improved by now which is what led me to your review. Personally I would never think your scars look bad though.....so don't feel too bad I'd kill to have your smooth cheeks.
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Had frax laser done as well with sephylle . Was a complete waste of a week and $1700.00 . In my opinion it is a scam , the doctors main line is you wobt see complete results for up to 6 months, lol. Thats just to get you out of there office with out complaining. I bought a derma pen from china and use it with copper peptide results are 10 times what the doctor did with frax laser. I also home derma roll and have a home micro dembrasion. I use all these at different times and it is the best results i have ever had. Just be consistent. I have spent alot of money on doctor recomended procedures noth of them ever worked or had lasting results. They are out there to make money period not to help you or me. Take control youself you will save money and get better results
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Fraxel Repair? What else have you tried? Fillers? TCA peels? Thanks!!
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I have tried restlyn, worked awesome lasted only 1 to 2 months. Becauce it worked so well i tried to find a doctor to do artfille, artcolle ect, permanent filler. Finally found someone who does it a established reputable Dr. and he was absolutly terrible at infections. Again a waste of my money and my face looked worse.
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Thanks for sharing your experience with the Fraxel Repair treatment. Let us know how your follow up goes, and if  you start to see improvement with the grid marks. 
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Can we have an update please? I know these things take time to see the final result and immediately after the procedure is often the worst. How are you doing now?
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I will post a pic soon but so far I'm not impressed. I'm still pretty pink, can still see the lines although they are starting to fade. My skin looks pretty smooth with makeup on but I'm not convinced it will stay that way. My skin is still rough when you look up really close. I never got that new smooth skin I've seen others talk about. I'm frustrated. Seeing the doctor tomorrow and will let you know what he says.
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How is it looking now? Was this Repair or Restore?
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It is still pretty red but that's not what bothers me. It's the lines that look bad. My right cheek has vertical stripes across it and one very distinct horizontal line under my eye. When I look very close I can see the grid dots on my face too. No one else would be able to see it but I can. The scars do seem better but I've read that once the micro swelling goes down it won't be as much of an improvement... The irritation is almost gone- just occasionally itchy now.
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Repair
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Sounds like a horrible experience and underlines that every single person has a unique reaction that can't be predicted. You have my sympathy during this healing period. I hope you will have the longed-for results you deserve and be able to look back to say the suffering was worth it. I think that cosmetic dermatologists gain a false sense of security because most patients come through most procedures as expected. They are not prepared to deal with those who have a nasty time like you did and so do not reveal the negative possibilities to prospective clients for fear of losing business. It's comforting that you have the makeup skills to cover the mess while you're healing. I hope you continue to take photos. You will have proof of your misery if it's ever needed. Do keep your diet as clean and healthy as possible - lots of fresh vegetables and fruit, no sugar or soft drinks, etc., and vitamins will help your body heal faster. Get your rest, too. Sleep is undervalued as a healing aid, imho. Best of luck and please share pix as you get back to normal.
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Thank you so much for your kind words. I shared my experience to help others and also for support as I did not tell many people I was doing this. So I really appreciate it.
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