Fractional CO2 Laser for Hypertrophic scars. Effective, side effects? (Photo)
Doctor Answers 5
Fractional lasers for forehead scars
Scar on Face -- Lasers (Fraxel, Co2, Erbium), Microneedling/PRP, Subcision, Surgical Revision
Hypertrophic scars and laser resurfacing
Your other option besides CO2 laser resurfacing is using an Erbium laser which has a lower risk of PIH in your skin type due to the decrease in coagulation produced by the laser, so less thermal injury is created.
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Fractional CO2 for scarring
The questions about number of passes, energy, etc. are not a one-size-fits-all approach, and best left in the hands of an expert. For example, the post inflammatory pigment changes that you ask about are mostly determined by the density of treatment, not as much by the energy of treatment - you can treat very deeply into a scar with significant spacing between this treatment areas and reduce your risk of pigment change.
To ensure you are receiving the highest level of care, seek out a modernly trained, new-school dermatologic surgeon, oculoplastic surgeon, facial plastic surgeon or plastic surgeon who is board certified and fellowship trained in one of these "core four" cosmetic specialties.
Fractional resurfacing for hypertrophic scars
Fractional c02 resurfacing has been shown to be very effective for hypertrophic scars. In fact one company developed particularly useful settings to improve the results. The risk of hyperpigmentation is real, and it may be something that you should expect, knowing that you can likely treat it following the treatment. Some physicians prescribe products like hydroquinones or natural skin lighteners like arbutin or kojic acid, but the results are mixed with regard to success in minimizing the hyperpigmentation. Hypopigmentation is much less likely with the kinds of lasers that are currently available, but it is still a risk. I would plan to have 3-5 treatments over 6-8 months.
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.