I went to a dermatologist for skin lightening treatment, specifically to eliminate a few dark spots (hyperpigmentation) caused by cystic acne. My doctor highly recommended Fraxel. I knew for best results I'd probably have to have several treatments. I went in for my first (and only) treatment in March 2007. We started by taking "before" photos so we could monitor my progress.
The procedure went exactly as I had been told. Some mild pain, some redness and swelling on day two and three, followed by some peeling for about a week. I did everything the doctor told me to -- used 50+ suncreen, used mild cleansers during the healing phase, didn't scrub my face. Initially I noticed some improvement in my skin's texture but also noticed darkness across my cheeks where previously there had been none.
I'm so glad that we had those "before" photos as a reference because when I went in in May for my follow-up visit, the "after" photos confirmed new hyperpigmentation. I decided that I didn't want to pay another $1000 for my skin to look worse so I told my doctor I would not schedule the other Fraxel procedures. Instead, she gave me some samples of EpiQuin, which eliminated my dark acne spots within six weeks! (I don't know why she didn't just prescribe this in this first place.
It's a lot less expensive and painful than Fraxel and worked great!) She then wrote a prescription so I could keep treating the hyperpigmentation on my cheeks. I've been using EpiQuin off and on for the past year but it hasn't completely eliminated the hyperpigmentation on my cheeks caused by Fraxel. I wish I had my money (and original skin color) back.