Active FX Better Than Dermabrasion?

I want to get rid of lines on my upper lip. I used to smoke but have quitted for 10 years now. I am scheduled for Active FX fractional resurfacing on end of May. Is that better than dermabrasion? I'm not wanting the shot treatments. Thanks.

Doctor Answers 2

For lip lines, combination approaches work best

For those who smoked in the past, lip lines appear because the lips lose volume and the smoke preserves the shrunken lip. You can use dermabrasion to reduce the lip lines appearane, but if the lip is not revolumized, they will still show.

Dermabrasion is also operator dependent and can cause scarring and pigmentation changes. Active FX, or more importantly, the Deep FX treatment mode, is very good for deep lines. It is more controllable, but it could take six months to see the results.

Because the laser induces collagen, it is designed to allow for long-term fill right under the lip line itself, potentially reducing your need to inject filler to revolumize the whole lip. I perform both procedures along with lip injections as necessary and like the results for my patients. Speak to your treating physician about your concerns.

Denver Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 56 reviews

Lines around the lips

Lines around the lips (perioral rhytids) can be treated in a few different ways.  Dermabrasion is a procedure that basically sandpapers the outer skin layers away.  It can be quite effective.  It is less popular than it used be, mostly because it had a high risk of pigment loss which would look like skin around the mouth is lighter than the rest of the face.  Lasers also remove the outer layers of skin to create a smoother appearance, but in a more precise way.  There is definitely less risk of pigment loss with the most modern laser which are fractional. If ActiveFX were to be used for lip lines, the addition of DeepFX at the same time should also be considered. Fillers and botox may give additional benefit.  Congratulations on quitting smoking!! That's the best thing you did for your skin. 

Brett S. Kotlus, MD, MS
New York Oculoplastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 59 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.