Was Almost Frightened Off, but So Glad I Did the Fraxel Now!
- updated 2 years ago
Just to clear up pricing, the $450 was an inital...
- 8 Mar 2009
Just to clear up pricing, the $450 was an inital payment and the total will work out to be about $2000US.
Firstly, I'm getting fraxel to treat hypopigmented (white) scarring on my arms which are, as I understand it, harder scars to get rid of. I had my first treatment 3 days ago and am very impressed with how well it was handled and how smoothly it all went.
The experience itself:
I went in 3 days ago to have it done. I took the day off work as I was anticipating pain and/or horror. I had this done by a doctor at a dermatology clinic, rather than by an esthetician.
To be truthful, the laser was very strong. Before the procedure, I was given a painkiller and anesthetic cream on the actual area to be lasered. This stuff was also extremely strong. To give a better idea, I also had injections of cortisone into the scarred area after the lasering was done. I could not feel the injections at all but I could still feel the laser, and pain from the laser, though it was mild bordering on moderate, though certainly not unbearable. Judging by that I'd say that without the numbing cream the laser would have been sheer agony. I do not recommend doing fraxel without the numbing cream, as the experience would be horrendous. The actual lasering only took a matter of minutes, it was over with quite quickly.
Afterwards, I was given after care information as well as moisturizer to use on the area. I had redness, just like a sunburn, but even after the numbing cream wore off, I barely felt anything. There was no swelling at all, still no swelling at all, and now, 3 days after, it looks like a slightly darkened, healing sunburn.
It's only been days, and the skin is still darkened and sandpapery, but I can already see some lessening in the appearance of the scarring. I'll post more updates after my second procedure, which is next month.
My overall advice? The doctor you see makes all the difference. I'd advise seeing a doctor and not a beautician. Don't be scared off by the negative experiences of others which, while valid, and I feel deeply for those people and am very sorry to hear about what happened to them, that does not mean a negative experience for everybody. I was so scared I almost canceled, and am extremely glad now that I didn't.
The next bit of advice - get the numbing cream. Don't do it without it, this is a very strong laser and without any painkillers, it will hurt. As it was, for me, the pain was bearable.
More updates to come once I can start to see more, and before my next treatment!
Ok, had procedure number two done a few days ago...
- 26 Apr 2009
Ok, had procedure number two done a few days ago.
That, was painful. The first time it hurt but this time, more so. Not during the process, but afterward it seems like it's more tender than it was the first time, that's because the skin is newer and thus more tender this time around.
It's gotten to the point where it's dried out and is sandpapery, and looks like a bad sunburn. It's starting to itch so I'm guessing it's healing well. The improvements are still coming along, some of the scars are almost invisible now, but the worse ones are taking longer to lessen in appearance.
It's still early, I'll update once the swelling/redness/bronzing has gone.
Update - two years later. The side effects have...
- 30 Jul 2011
The side effects have completely gone. Main side effects? Dark AND light patches on my skin (hyper and hypo pigmentation). The light patches were due to the cortisone. The darker reddish patches were from the laser itself.
So my scars, the reason for my treatment? The honest answers, now. Are they gone? No. Are they better? Absolutely. They have been reduced by about 50% so that in sine lighting you can't even see them, nor are they obvious anymore unless you know what you're looking for.
Before fraxel, I used to get people and their questions when they saw the scarring and were too naive or rude to bot ask the question. Since the fraxel, knock on wood, not one question, even one.
Was it worth it? Yes. Would I recommend it to everyone? No. I'm lucky enough to be of the right skin type for laser and so responded very well. I also know I was very lucky and not everyone will have the same experience. But if I could do it again, I'd do so in a heartbeat.
My next step from here, the rhinoplasty I've wanted since puberty! Looking forward to posting that experience :) Also extremely nervous!
Edit** meant to say was reduced by 60% not 50. And...
- 30 Jul 2011
Because my doctor was understanding, informed, and knew exactly what he was doing and told me exactly what to expect. Very impressed overall.