Fraxel Destroyed my Skin...surprised? Fraxel Dual 1927 Wavelength - Boston, MA

Just another Fraxel horror story for all of you...

Just another Fraxel horror story for all of you considering it. I had Fraxel done 1.5 months ago to treat hyper-pigmentation and scarring caused by a Juvederm filler complication (vascular compromise). Basically I had a filler injection and experienced a 1 in 100,000 rare complication causing ulceration and long-term redness. I had Fraxel to treat this problem 3 months later. Now I'm left with very bad textural damage. My skin looks like an orange peel and is getting worse each day. I had the procedure at the same place I had the filler. Two devastating outcomes from one place. The hyper-pigmentation and scarring seem worse and my skin is falling apart more each day. I hesitated to get Fraxel due to the many negative things I've been reading and cancelled my first appointment, I almost didn't get it. Unfortunately, I changed my mind after being convinced by the technician and went through with it. I don't recommend this damaging technology.

The technician promised me that everything would be ok...Nope.

The damage seems to be progressing each day..

the damage seems to be progressing each day..

Just want to point out in the second picture what...

Just want to point out in the second picture what looks like acne scarring is not actually acne scarring. I never had any acne scars, that scarred texture is what was left by the laser. My skin was baby smooth before Fraxel.

Damage is getting a bit worse. New red scars...

Damage is getting a bit worse. New red scars appearing. Old scars widening.

Uploaded a new photo to show you another result of...

Uploaded a new photo to show you another result of damage. I have horizontal lines extending across my forehead. They've been there since after the procedure and they never seem to plump out. They seem to get deeper. My forehead has a strange orange peel texture with long horizontal linear dents.

Skin's still a mess and Fraxel didn't help what I...

Skin's still a mess and Fraxel didn't help what I was trying to treat at all. I feel like I was tricked into it for that I have been told that Fraxel doesn't help with vascular redness. Although my skin is even more of disaster, I'm still very stressed about pigmentation issue from the filler injury and am considering IPL (a proven treatment for this type of problem). Although, IPL damage is apparently possible too and I'm on Retin-A which I've been told doesn't react well with IPL. I just wish IPL was suggested before Fraxel, not after. Quite stressed but at least the antidepressants are helping a little bit.

Bah, skin looking quite bad today mates....

Bah, skin looking quite bad today mates. Texture-wise, very leathery, orange-peelish, dry, like a burn victim. Trying to stay positive; anyone else experience their skin looking damaged before their skin completely healed? I just want to understand whether my skin will normalize or whether it will heal into something bad, I really don't know much about other's experiences. Anyone else (maybe someone who received the 1927 nm) have this initial reaction before they completely healed months later? Please be honest,

Thank you.

Going to see a dermatologist today and share with...

Going to see a dermatologist today and share with him my cosmetic damages and hopefully get a referral for vbeam to treat my vascular compression pigmentation issues. I'm also going discuss my burned face as it is causing me serious mental distress. I had a panic attack this morning and fainted on the kitchen floor.

Just an update. Skin texture getting worse and now...

Just an update. Skin texture getting worse and now noticing hollowness under eyes. The skin under my eyes are beginning to sag.

Recently noticed that the underside of my eyes may...

Recently noticed that the underside of my eyes may not be hollow at all but just swollen. They've been very itchy and irritated almost like an allergy or something. I've had small eye infections in the past but I'm not sure what to make of it. Eyes are quite irritated for some reason. If this persists I may get it checked out.

A few more updates. My anxiety's quite better...

A few more updates. My anxiety's quite better thanks to medication and I'm feeling better knowing I'm getting IPL in a few weeks to treat the PIH associated with the filler injury I've had. I'd LOVE to have that treated once and for all. Just to clarify, the red scars I've noticed in the past may simply be an illusion caused by my strange surface texture. Sort of a leathery, dehydrated, burnt skin type of look and scars (whether they're acne scars) underneath it appear stretched and misshapen. Hard to really distinguish what's scars and what's surface texture I guess. Unless it's safe to say the texture itself is one big scar. Lol, idk. I think an eventual peel following IPL my help it as it's likely superficial. Clearly I didn't heal well. I feel it may be physiology (poor wound healing) rather than the operator. The visibility of the texture seems to be mild in indoor lighting and mainly visible up close and much more pronounced in the sun light. Anyone else out there with similar issues? I still have that minor orange peel look on my forehead but that doesn't really bother me as much as the lower face textural issues that seem to proliferate with time. Also, can anyone recommend a good non-comedogenic moisturizer besides Cetaphil or Cerave?

Eh, I think this is worth mentioning because it's...

Eh, I think this is worth mentioning because it's driving me crazy. My face is so constantly itchy and it's starting to drive me nuts. It's weird because it's the most moisturized part of my skin. It gets itchier and itchier. I'm trying to moisturize more but I don't think it makes too much of a difference. It's getting hard to sleep, I'll even wake up in the middle of the night and have the urge to itch my cheeks. I haven't changed anything in my routine. I still use the same moisturizer "Cerave Cream". Maybe I need a better moisturizer? I've been considering Aquaphor but will that clog pores? Yet again, even though Cerave is supposed to be non-comedogenic I think I'm noticing little bumps all over my cheeks now. Hard to tell though with the way my skin texture is. Is there any non-irritating anti-itch creams I can safely apply? I know calamine lotion dries skin. What about Aloe Vera?

I've been using Tretinoin cream for about 2 months...

I've been using Tretinoin cream for about 2 months with no positive change. Same orange peel texture covering whole face. Still considering TCA peels.

Time is flying by... Unfortunately nothing is...

Time is flying by... Unfortunately nothing is getting better. I've been on tretinoin for 3+months and am trying to decide whether I should continue.


Hey guys,

It's been awhile since I've updated so I guess I'll throw a quick one. Umm, nothing's better. In fact, texture has gotten considerably worse. Haven't been using Retin-A. It's very unfortunate and has been a very stressful year... Who knows maybe things will turn around one day. Let's all try to stay positive.

I'll certainly post if things ever do get better. I think it's important that people publish their experience of bad to good to give others hope. I hope more people contribute.
Thanks guys.

Happy hello!

Hey everyone, I've been on 5 mg of isotretinoin for 216 days and all my problems have been fully rectified. I made a thread at iplandlaser damage, but I got banned for some reason. Anyway, my skin is currently pigment free, scar free, and pore-free. I can't help but assume low-dose accutane pretty much did it. I seem to have better skin than all my friends now. Just an update.

Image of current skin condition

Image of current skin condition

Another pic under better lighting.

It was a long road. The damage of course got worse two years after Fraxel. I then finally decided to experiment the low-dose Isotretinoin course. My skin has changed significantly about 180 days into the course. Now on day 216. Accumulation of the compound is 2820 mg right now due to sporadic dose changes, but I keep with it consistently. I wouldn't trust that IPL and Laser Damage Support forum. It seems to be a community pushing a product. Do what feels right. If anyone out there decides to try this make sure you consider risks! So far isotretinoin has worked for FraxelVictim, Vickky, and myself. Cheers!

Keeping track on this regimen

I wrote a program to help keep track of each day and the amount taken on that day, accumulation of the compound, and retinyl conversion to compare between retinoic acid and isotretinoin. This is my current status illustrated in the provided image. I find it's best you keep track of every variable if you consider pursuing isotretinoin as a viable solution.

Update - Post Error Correction

I stated the user "FraxelVictim" also had success with Isotretinoin in a previous post. I meant the user "FraxelDamage". He's registered here on RealSelf and at that IPL and Laser Damage Support forum.

3030 mg total. Very happy so far.

Current state of my skin as I continue with my isotretinoin micro-dose experiment. Very happy!

I've ingested 3030 mg so far throughout this course. Stay tuned folks! I'm not finished yet.
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Comments (972)

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I have to ask.. are your photos photoshopped? to be totally honest, your skin looks photoshopped. I just think it's important to not mislead people about accutane-it's hardcore in low doses and if your skin is not perfect, that's ok. maybe i'm wrong and i apologize if i am, but something seems off in your photos
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Hey Happygirl, I don't believe his photos are photoshopped. I took Accutane when I was 16 and it was the real stuff not the generic that's only available here in the states now. After 3.5 months of use my skin was flawless. Not a pore in sight and baby smooth. Accutane is a hardcore drug though you are right. Before going on it again I saw your blog and how you healed your skin with emu oil and honey. I tried that method for about two months and unfortunately it did not work for me. Thanks for caring and sharing about your experience.
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johnny1671, Did you also have laser damage? Does Accutane help most facial flaws such as wrinkles and scars?
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Yeah I have IPL damage from V-beam. I have lines both vertical and some horizontal as well as acne and hypopigmentation that resulted from the procedure. I can't say whether Accutane can help wrinkles / scars. I'm only on day 40 of using it specifically for the laser damage. My previous use of it was 20 years ago and it was simply for cystic acne during that time and for cystic acne it did indeed help. So far as of day 40 I haven't seen any changes but again I'm on a generic version (Claravis) since real Accutane is no longer available in the states and I'm also on a low dose 30mg. It can take a while to build up in the system .
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Thanks for the feedback. Please let me know if it helps.
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No problem K2 and I will.
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Hi Wayne, thanks for sharing your story. Mine is similar but it involves IPL (V-Beam), lines, rough texture, pin wholes, and acne as a result of the procedure. I wanted to ask you how long before you noticed results from the Accutane? I've been on 30mg a day for the past 5 weeks for a total dose of 1050mg and still haven't noticed any changes. I have also been supplementing with 2000mg of Vitamin C and a 1000mg of liquid Fish oil. I weigh 145lbs if that information is helpful in any way? Thanks for your time.
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Hey Johnny. I noticed Wayne didn't answer u so I just wanted to let u know that from other posts I've read from him I believe it took him about 6 months before he started seeing improvement, if I'm not mistaken. He did say it looked worse before it got better. Good luck to u and please keep us posted on ur results!
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Thanks LMS I will. I've taken Accutane before when I was 16. At that time it wasn't generic Accutane it was the real stuff and it cleared up my skin in 3 1/2 months and I had flawless skin for a year after that before I began developing cystic acne again. This time I'm hoping it clears the acne and the lines IPL has caused.
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Damn man your skin looks amazing as if you never had damage before
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You look great Wayne. Accutane would not help me though. I do not have oily skin (very dry) and I don't think you have the same symptoms I have. Tiny holes and lines all over my face.
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Maybe or maybe not. Unfortunately there's no definitive answer. =-/
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You look great Wayne. Thank you for the message and all the updates. Truly Appreciate it
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I have severely dry skin as well and accutane has not made that worse in any way just something for u to consider. I truly believe this to be our cure but microdosing is critical because it does have side effects even if it varies from people to people
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Thank you rladlstj. That is good to know, but I don't believe you and Wayne had the same symptoms some of us have or had. The pin marks with lines and orange peel. I can understand how Accutane can help the bumpy texture, but how can it help with scarring or my skin which actually feels like sandpaper?
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I think it can be a cure for some, and I don't think they think it's a cure for all. I too have the holes and the lines and orange peel texture. I'm not sure if it could repair scarring in "holes" form. The way I'm looking at it is accutane reduces oil and shrinks pores. As the pores shrink it may give the appearance of the holes being smaller, possibly with the oil gone and the slightly flatter/smoother surface, the skin can regenerate in this manor or state. The skin would possibly be tighter as well. I'm one mth post, so far the holes have not changed. I'm thinking of starting accutane at my two mth mark. Not sure if that's a good or bad thing. As my skin is still irritated a bit. But at two mths I would still b in my healing stage, perhaps the accutane would b beneficial during this time. Something to think about anyway.
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Hi, I don't think the holes we have on our skin from the laser are pores. From what dermatologists have told me, they are scars.
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Oh I do believe they are scars for sure, but we also have pores as well, some if these pores are most likely within or around our laser scar holes. If the pores close, it may help pull the scar holes closer together giving the appearance of smaller scar holes. Also with no debris and oil in our scar holes, maybe, and I say maybe, it can finally allow the holes to close, after all the vit. A in the accutane will help stimulate colleges production, so maybe it can affect the scar holes.
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I had a wake up call to whats going on and ive described it on my wall. Hypersensitivty is whats causing us this damage. Forcefully created collagen using lasers means that the skin will break down that much faster (thinning). Accutane also forcefully creates collagen but from the inside out so people like us who can no longer continue lasering our faces as it will create severe damage when skin is already vulnerable from previous lasers(holes orange texture, scarring, etc) can turn to for healing. I will know upon my healing but im guessing this is the truth. As long as u dont overdose, i dont see why accutane will not be able to reverse the damage to a certain point. (depending on the severity of the damage it will not be a 100percent). One thing we should be wary about is even after healing, continuously expecting further results from accutane will only cause hypersensitivity again, therefore, ur skin will break down again and cause u to chase tail. I dont even think lasers in that sense is particually a bad procedure as long as u dont go to the extremes.
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I'm not sure I'm following u on the last part; "One thing we should be wary about is even after healing, continuously expecting further results from accutane will only cause hypersensitivity again, therefore, ur skin will break down again and cause u to chase tail." Can I ask how u came to that conclusion? I've asked this before too but not sure if u saw/answered. How many ppl have u talked to with laser damage that gave taken accutane after and what kind of results did they get? We're they permanent and do u know what dose? Sorry for all the questions just wanted yo pick ur brain.
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again this is all a hypothesis that will only prove itself upon my healing. Accutane has the same effects as lasers in that it forcefully makes the skin produce new collagen, very fragil and weak just like a babies skin would be from the inside out. Now as wonderful as that sounds, this newly created collagen breaks down much faster than a normal persons skin cells will because they have less resistance to external environment. Look at a babies skin, they develope rashes at the sightest irritation, etc. An babies skin developes resistance as it ages, and basically disrupting that balance will mean a faster breakdown(im talking years even at the speed of regeneration young people have). If u keep going on accutane without giving the newly created collagen to mature and develop some sort of resistance, the hypersensitive cells will only continue to be more hypersensitive and thus rapidly break down at the smallest irritation. I do believe that the results can be permanent if accutane is taken in a periodic dose every six months or so with extremely well developed skin care routines and prevention of sun/stress but this is almost impossible with the current society unless ur very young.
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i have orange peel and fine lines. and i think waynes just the oily skin type. doesnt neccessarly mean his skin was moist in any way. if anything i bet his skin was dehydrated before accutane as described by his explanation that his skin was leathery and burnt. people with dry skin can also have oily skin. oily skin is a skin type not a skin condition
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Rladlstj, just wondering where you are getting your accutane from? Wayne gave me his online source, unfortunately they do not ship to canada. Do you know of another source that does?
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Good luck finding a reputable on line pharmacy that ships to canada. I have done lots of research to try and find this but the company's that i have found have terrible user ratings, quoting things such as fake drugs and never receiving drugs after payment. Accutane is strongly regulated in Canada and that's why none of the reputable pharmacies can ship here.
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Really eh? Hmm, I may just have to get it shipped to someone I know in the states. How much research have you done losinghope? Should I even bother looking for one?
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