Deep FX Laser Followed by Active FX to Face and Neck. How Much Pain Will I be in?

I am having deep FX followed by Active FX to my face and neck by the esthetician. How much pain will I have during and after? Is this safe to have done by the nurse esthetician?

Doctor Answers 4

Deep FX Laser Followed by Active FX

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Thank you for your question. Pain depends on what level or poser they treat you at.  Pain could be significant or mild. The safety is something we cannot determine from CA.  In CA, only MD, FNP, PA, RN's are allowed to use this device. The laws in PA appear to be different.  I recommend seeing the office of a Board Certified Dermatologist or Board Certified Plastic Surgeon and perhaps you are at one now. If so, and they are in charge, and have a list of great success, it is hard to judge harshly. I hope this helps!

Active/Deep Fx laser skin resurfacing expert answers

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The Encore carbon dioxide laser is a wonderful addition to our arsenal of skin lasers, and I have been absolutely thrilled with the results over the last few years.  It is a very powerful machine for improving skin complexion and texture, but if used improperly (and there can be a fine line) there is a high risk of scarring.  It can be performed in the office with the patient awake, but this is usually quite painful.  For this reason, although it costs a little more, I prefer to do the treatments with moderate sedation in the operating room setting.  Once the laser is finished, my patients have moderate discomfort for about 30 minutes that is a warm "sunburn" sensation.  After that, they are typically pain free and do not usually require anything more than tylenol.

You (and your doctor) should be  very cautious treating any area off the face.  Nonfacial areas have a much higher risk of permanent disfiguring scars.  You can decide if you are willing to have a non-physician do your treatment.  Obviously you are settling for someone less skilled.  For instance, would you let a nurse, let alone a hair dresser do open heart surgery?  It's fine if everything goes well, but if there is a problem, they are generally ill-qualified to deal with complications.  And you never know their true training or qualifications.  You will have to decide if saving the money by going to a second tier or third tier non-MD provider is worth the risk.  In our office, I do all the laser treatments except low level Fraxel Restore and laser hair removal.  Even for those lasers I am in the office, and my registered nurse has been trained by me personally and has over 5 years experience.

Good luck,

Yoash Enzer, MD

Yoash R. Enzer, MD, FACS
Providence Oculoplastic Surgeon

Temporary pain with Deep/Active FX

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Temporary burning and tingling sensation is common following fractionated laser resurfacing procedures, this subsides in 2-4 hours.  After this period, very little discomfort is felt, although swelling can occur for an additional couple of days, especially when areas such as the face are involved.  Continuing discomfort, redness, or swelling should be evaluated, as this may be an early sign of infection.

I caution the use of Deep FX on the neck and chest.  The density of hair follicles from which new skin cells are generated is sparse, and energy levels should be adjusted.  At our clinic, we only allow this procedure to be performed by board-certified physicians.

Melanie D. Palm, MD - Account Suspended
San Diego Dermatologic Surgeon

How much pain after Active or Deep Fx

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Patients generally experience a burning sensation in the area treated with the laser for 1 to 2 hours which feels somewhat like a sunburn.  This can be soothed with ice.  Following this period there is little to no pain.   The active and deep FX are ablative fractional lasers which should only be used by a qualified physician with knowledge of lasers. 

James C. Marotta, MD
Long Island Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 127 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.