Deep Acne Scars. Which Treatment Would Suit Me Best? (photo)

Hello, I am 37 years old. I had severe acne since I was 15 till I was 30, so the scars are old. The pics below show my scars after ten microdermabrasion sessions that haven't improved them much. Also, a poor treatment with gycolic acid at 100% some years ago created deep scars like the one you see on my forehead. I hope you can guide me as to what treatment (laser, chemical peels, etc.) would suit me best in reducing the appearance of the scars. Thank you very much. Leo

Doctor Answers 6

Profractional FX for acne scars

Thanks for sharing your pictures.  Sadly you will never be able to return your skin to 'normal' but you can significantly improve the appearance with fractional resurfacing.  I personally prefer the Sciton Profractional FX system as is can be set to treat much deeper than other systems.  For your skin color we can treat with the greatest density with each treatment an be able to significantly improve your scarring with a series of treatments. 

Los Gatos Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Deep Acne Scar Treatments

Hi Leo.  Although we do not use it, the severity of your scars would warrant a deep traditional CO2 resurfacing.  While a very deep profractional may help, we think traditional CO2 would be better for you.  Good luck.

Harold J. Kaplan, MD
Los Angeles Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 6 reviews



Thank you for your questions. You have a few options for the acne scar you have. You can do Profractional Laser and micro laser peel. You can also do a facelift that can stretch out the skin and that would be the best for the deeper scars.


Stuart B. Kincaid, MD, FACS (in memoriam)
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
3.3 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Treatment options for severe acne scars

It appears that you would respond well to a combination of some kind of resurfacing procedure, such as TCA peels or laser resurfacing, and injectable filler.

Dina D. Strachan, MD
New York Dermatologist
3.3 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

Best Treatment for Deep Acne Scars

Hi Leo,

The most effective and longest lasting treatment for the type of acne scarring that you have is treatment with a Fractional CO2 laser.  Fractional CO2 lasers work by sending microscopic columns of energy into the skin, while ablating the skin's surface, in order to stimulate the production of healthy collagen to fill in the pitted scars.  Since your own collagen is being stimulated to produce the improvement, the improvement of your acne scars will be permanent.  Most patients experience a significant improvement after a single Fractional CO2 laser resurfacing treatment.

Fractional laser technology means that tiny areas of untreated skin will be left between the treated areas; this promotes fast healing and helps to prevent side effects similar to what you experienced years ago with the chemical peel.



Eric Schweiger, MD
New York Dermatologic Surgeon
3.8 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Treatment for Depressed Acne Scars

You have mostly broad-based, depressed scars which will improve drastically with injectable fillers.  In our practice we use liquid injectable silicone which is the ideal filler for acne scarring as it is precise and permanent. After the scars are filled, you may need some resurfacing treatment such as chemical peeling, laser and/or electrosurgery, but you will get over an 80% improvement with fillers alone. Click on the link below for before and after photos of acne scars mostly treated with filling. 

Channing R. Barnett, MD
New York Dermatologist
4.1 out of 5 stars 8 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.