Non Ablative Laser For Treating Acne, Acne Scars and Uneven Skin Tone On Filipino Skin? (photo)

1) Which non ablative laser ( or combination of lasers) works best in treating Filipino skin? 2) I have mild active acne, acne scars, and uneven skin tone. 3) What type of scars do I have? 4) How much improvement can I expect regarding my concerns? Doctors, Thank you kindly for your time. It's much appreciated. Respect!!!

Doctor Answers 1

Non-ablative fractional laser is best

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Acne scarring, especially in people with darker skin types, is challenging to treat.  The safest and also most effective laser in your case is a non-ablative fractionated device.  I use a 1540nm XD fractionated Palomar device, but you will find many others out there.  Your scars appear to be mostly rolled and boxcar types with scattered pits.  The more superficial rolled type, those shaped like a spoon, tend to respond best.  

A study published last year looked at 20 patients with active acne and scarring who had 4 sessions of 1540 nm non-ablative fractional laser treatments spaced 4 months apart.  80% of patients felt the appearance of their scars had improved (40% very much improved), and 85% of patients felt their active acne had improved (45% very much improved).   Very much improved equaled 50-75% improvement in this study.  (Reference: Journal of Drugs in Dermatology, August 2011, v10, i8, page 907(6).)  

Since you have a darker skin type, I would start with conservative settings and expect to treat monthly 5-7 times for maximal improvement.  I will sometimes combine the use of Restylane or another hyaluronic acid filler for deeper rolled scars.

Greenwood Village Dermatologic Surgeon

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