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Very Pleased with Fraxel Repair

I had Fraxel Repair done on January 5 for fine...

I had Fraxel Repair done on January 5 for fine lines, precancerous spots, and pores. I’m 41 with fair skin and blue eyes. I wanted to share with you my experience with my treatment, my Doctor and his staff. I have read a lot of negative blogs about the damage it has done to people’s skin and for that I’m truly sorry, that is why I wanted to share with you how vital it is for you to take all the precautionary steps to choosing your physician carefully. Experience is crucial. Surgeons who do it often, do it better. Don’t accept anything but the best, it’s your face we are talking about. Ask for references, how many procedures have they done, before and after photos, are they experienced with the old C02, and how many of those did they do.

I was told that people with severe acne or deep wrinkles will most likely need 2 to 3 treatments,however you should still benefit from having 1.

There is also a much speedier recovery the 2nd and 3rd time around. Discuss with your Doctor your expectations and he/she will determine exactly how many you’ll need to achieve your desired results. I have also read that results are not lasting past 6 months, or people are reverting back to their pre-Fraxel state. The day that I went in for my Fraxel my doctor introduced me to Marta Waller she was filming her 7 month follow up, for those of you who don’t know her she is a journalist who had undergone Fraxel repair in June 08’ and had a day to day (10 days plus 2 day follow up) video diary done of her experience on You Tube, you must check it out. Anyway, she looked amazing. I believe she said she was 55 and not a stitch of foundation 7 months out. I asked her if she was happy with her results and she said that she couldn’t be happier-even her daughter chimed in to tell me that the difference was just incredible, but I too will let you know in 3-6 months. I was also told that people who continue to smoke or sunbathe, Fraxel is not for them.

(Start your prescriptions the night before)

Day of: I took my prescriptions-keflex, Valtrex, and steroid cream on my face along with Benadryl in the am. They put numbing cream on my face, neck, and chest (Bring your IPod if or books on tape because the cream remains on the treating area for an hour plus…(I was too drugged to read) they also gave me a pain pill and a shot in the behind with Demerol along with nerve blockers around face. I literally felt no pain until he got to my chest a level 6/7 out of a 10. He stopped to ask me if I need more pain reliever and I said no you get through it, it’s not that bad, besides I wanted it over with. The worst part was that they let my husband in to see me before they cleaned me up and let me look in the mirror myself. My husband said wow honey… wow…that was about all he could say. Can’t say I blame him, I just smile and asked him for some fava beans and a glass of Chianti.

Day1. Vinegar soaks every 2/3 hours followed by aquaphor-yes even in the middle of the night. Don’t let your face get crusty.

Day2. I’m a swollen, ugly, weepy mess. I don’t feel as though I looked as bad as some of his before and after photos but I’m ugly and swollen none the less. No more pin point bleeding.

Day3. Swollen and ugly, still doing the vinegar soaks every 4 hour now.

Day4. Swollen and ugly, getting tight and peeling a little around my nose, lip, and, chin. I’m breaking out, obvious from the Aquaphor. God- I love that stuff.

Day5. The swelling is going down a bit except for eye area. Still pretty red and of course, UGLY! I don’t look as good as Rebex from “2 weeks post” at her day 5. Still doing vinegar soaks; twice a day, washing with mild cleanser and have now switched from Aquaphor to cetaphil moisturizer-feels much better-Oh yea. This was my turning point. Also feeling very itchy…must be healing.

Day6. Healing seems to very gradual-even with all the healing vitamins(pre/post:help me heal vitamins) which I think are doing sqwat…and still swollen and ugly.

Day7. Not bad…A little better than day 6. What looked as though it was going to peel seems to have smoothed out. Still itchy and very pink.

17 day results

Well what seems to have been a long week of healing coupled with another week of redness, (just slightly pink now) Day 12 was the day I went back to work I got comments about looking like I was somewhere exotic, I just nodded. Today is day 17 I’m still pink, but presentable I’m very pleased with my results. My skin is smooth. The fine lines around my eyes have vanished (A little swollen under my right eye but hardly noticeable). The lines above my upper lip have softened…I may want to do a repair light, which he mentioned but I will wait at least 6 months. I felt my doctor was extremely well educated on the fraxel laser as well as my custom results. He has a 100% satisfaction thus far in all his fraxel clients. His staff felt more like family than a medical office. The atmosphere was very warm, yet professional. Would I recommend this Doctor? In a heartbeat!!!!!

Los Angeles Facial Plastic Surgeon

Extremely well educated on the fraxel repair laser.

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
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Comments (57)

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Would love to see photos close up, in outdoor light to see your results over the years. Since you are so informed on the procedure I thought you would have your own photos to show. Hope you can share with all.
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Dear Fairest of All ... You posted until 17 days. We have not seen you after swelling goes down and pink gone. How did it work out?
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How long until the pink went away and how is it now? Do you love the results and did you get weird colour changes after (paler or pinker)?
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Some people don't like to post pictures on the internet. I have had 5 Fraxel Re:pairs all at 70mj-60% for acne scars and I am quite pleased. I am not perfect, but I am fighting aging also
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How can anyone really see any actual results from these pictures? One question: how come barely ANYONE who gives thumbs up to Fraxel, which has so many negative reviews, post a close-up before picture...? And the after picture is taken too soon after healing, while the skin is still trying to recover and is swollen which makes the skin look artificially smooth. Pictures should be close-up and clear before Fraxel, and one-two years after Fraxel.
It's almost staged reviews.
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Hi Kerrig,

I can only speak for my experience in my practice as "Fraxel repair" is not a commodity that is the same in every practice. My patients who were treated up to 5 years ago still have amazing skin. Make sure that you choose your treating physician most carefully. Good luck and be well.
Dr. P

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How is this even possible? My friend and I had only two sessions of Fraxel. The skin is ruined. Yet the doctor was an "expert" on it and claims only the lightest settings were used. I think he's lying, because the second treatment was unbearable and almost had to be cancelled. My skin is completely shriveled with fine lines all over, like someone 20 years older than me. None of these same signs of aging exist on my hands, my neck, arms, legs - anywhere. Only where I got Fraxel treatment.

It's horrible for a doctor to recommend this treatment, when feedback on this board clearly demonstrates there is something wrong with Fraxel and it causes premature aging and skin damage. The sun would make us all youthful, if burning the skin improves the texture and removes lines!
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To all and any doctor who answer is I have never had that happen, or heard of that, or seen such, or read of such damage.Please realize when you have gone to a derm doctor for ten years, they have had 3 years of experience on their laser, you have done a test spot, and have also seen his own pictures in other words done our homework. You say we should choose our doctors carefully. What happens when you done all that and still you still have all these cases of those who have damage? It is not our fault, gee it is not the doctors fault, and the manufactors say it is not their fault ,but they in turn point to the operators. Really we are still left we scars, damage and no one still admits that it could or does happen. No one wants to take care of you after. The worse part is that these is no accurate account of how many cases is really out there. There are still no warnings on some of the horrible results you can read about here. Guess the answer is $$$$$$! It is wonderful that you say you have 100% from your patients but what about an answer on us the ones that our damaged? Hey thanks for the I am sorry one of my fellow doctors hurt you. The majority never even that small little gesture of what should drawn into this profession trying to help others. Is that not in your oath?
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Thanks for your comments "Imsorrynow2". I speak for myself and my patients whom I have treated with Fraxel since it came to the market. Part of the informed consent of any procedure is the discussion of risks and complications of any procedure. If after that discussion your problem troubles you enough to take the risk of an adverse event, then you have the procedure. If not, then you do not have the procedure. I wish that I could guarantee my patients 100% safety and satisfaction with everything that I do, but I can't. There is a very small risk to all treatments. The only thing that I can guarantee my patients is that I will do my 100% best for them. On a board like this, we hear from many patients who unfortunately had an adverse outcome, but not from the 99% who have excellent outcomes without any problems. Choosing your doctor carefully helps to decrease your chances of complications, but does not eliminate any chance of problems. Our society tends to need to find fault, and in this case you can fault all parties concerned, but ultimately it is up to the physician and patient to come to a decision after a full informed consent discussion. Every informed consent has in print the risks, therefore both the manufacturer and the physician "admits" that complications can happen. The vast majority of laser patients have life altering improvements, which is the reason that I treat patients. The lasers do cost money, our time does cost money, but money is not the reason that I treat my patients. Some physicians may try to save money by using less expensive, inferior lasers and pass them off as "Fraxel", and end up with complications. Our oath is to "First do no harm", and certainly that is what having a full informed consent discussion before any procedure is about. Good luck and be well. Dr. Persky
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I think, Dr Persky, that some people are outraged at bad results and embarrassed and dismissive treatment when things go wrong. YOU are likely not someone who does that, but from some things on Realself, this is what has happened to many unacknowledged people. -- May I ask, however, if a combination of non-ablative and ablative spot areas can be done with no pigment changes because both are being done? And does skin really return to no pink and how long, roughly, usually, if not too aggressive?
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Hi ClareK, Each individual patient must be evaluated based on their skin type to assess the risk of hyperpigmentation (PIH). In my experience PIH has always faded over time, we just don't know how long it will take for each individual. I have not seen any hypopigmentation with the fractionated lasers. I prefer to treat anatomic areas rather than specific spots to avoid obvious differences in color during the healing time. Eventually the color returns to normal with both Fraxel repair (ablative) and with Fraxel restore (non-ablative) treatments. Usually with the most aggressive treatments it takes from 8 to 12 weeks for the skin color to return to normal, with non-ablative and less aggressive ablative the time is much less. Best, Dr. Persky
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Thank you. Well, I have seen a video where the skin (ablative fractional) actually shrinks in response to the laser -- closing the little holes, I guess -- and on my static lines (true wrinkles) I would like that because it will make them less wide, even if the rest stretches around to flatten them out. I'd like them to be actually not as wide grooves, not just flattened. So I thought doing the ablative over those areas and non-ablative elsewhere would give the best overall effect?
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I think, imsorrynow2, that Dr P is careful but your doc isn't. You are right they are real side effects if badly done; and it deserves more acknowledgment. I think Dr P would do well to realize some people have such effects. Good Drs wouldn't normally see such things; perhaps you're getting angry at the wrong guy. Just tell him he's not aware and commenting about the worst side effects and should inform himself ... but don't attack HIM if he's not a bad doc. --- I am sorry about your damage. Also, he was talking of colour changes because I asked.
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Sure, truth must be out there: if 5% are hurting, the risks for real damage must be known. It's different though, if he doesn't feel he's done such damage, himself. I would still encourage him to wake up to the real stories of damage he hasn't done -- to be an advocate. Maybe use the term advocate more and someone like him (including Dr P or not) might feel less attacked and really start to understand and dare to look into it more open-mindedly and take up your points.
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I feel I should jump in here and say I have had 5 Fraxel Re:pairs done at 70mj-60% with no complications. I wouldn't hesitate to have more as I get older.
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How long do the results last with Fraxel Repair. I am considering this one.

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I am getting ready to have Frxel:Repair on March 17th. Can anyone tell me where to go to make certain my doctor is reputable? He is in Saint Louis, MO.
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Hi Dazed, Your treating physician is the best person to decide on the safety of multiple high energy/density treatments. I believe that waiting at least 4-6 months between treatments 1 and 2, and then waiting at least 6-12 months between treatments 2 and 3 would be wise. Each individual patient will need evaluation before further aggressive treatments. By the way, after an aggressive treatment with Fraxel re:pair, I have seen impressive improvement when the patient receives a "Lite" treatment at settings as low as 5 mj and 20% (skin tightening, pigment lightening), but I have not tried this with acne patients yet. So glad to hear about your positive results with acne scarring. Be well. Dr. P
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Dr. Persky, thanks for helping us. Question: you say aggressive treatment then lighter ones?
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Dr Persky, I have had 2 Fraxel Repairs done at 70mj-60% with no complications. I am treating acne scars. Do you see a limit to the number of procedures one can have at a high intensity. I am seeing good results although it is too early to tell with the 2nd one(one month). I am considering having a 3rd Repair in November, and possibly yearly tuneups thereafter.
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FairestOfAll - definitely appreciate you being part of our community, but please refrain from posting your doctor's name in comments. It is shown to all registered users (above). Thanks -Tom
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Hi Glenda, My Doctor was {edited - this is shown above under "Fraxel Repair provider." You must register (free) to view the name.} He's the best!
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I am registered. How do I view the name?
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