Can Fraxel or Other Treatments Help with an Old Laser Treatment That Wasn't Done Correctly, Leaving Scarring and Severe Redness?

Had severe acne in my late teens, completed a cycle of Accutane, it worked but I was left with scarring. I rushed into a full face laser treatment, it was 1999, I don't even know what kind of laser it was. It left my face extremely red for months and the results were well below my expectations. I also suffered a couple of sunburns in the months that followed which didn't help with the redness. I am now 33 and have scarring and severe redness, underlying red marks and extremely sensitive skin

Doctor Answers 4

Fraxel Laser Redness

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Thank you for your question. There are many technologies that will help with acne scarring and redness. I would recommend consulting under the supervision of a Board Certified Dermatologist or Plastic Surgeon for safest and best treatment option. I hope this helps.

Fraxel lasers can help some raised red scars improve

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It might have been the non fractional carbon dioxide laser you had in 1999, but regardless, red raised hypertrophic scarring should be evaluated with an in-person consultation so that the doctor can determine if you're a candidate for V-beam laser or other vascular lasers or light sources, to diminish the blood flow in the scar tissue. There are other scar therapies that may be needed in some patients such as corticosteroid injections, special scar dressings and topical scar gels such as the SkinMedica Scar Recovery Gel. Doctors should evaluate each scar and make their recommendations to their patients individually as not all scars respond the same. There are rare risks that treatment can make the scar worse.

The information provided in Dr. Shelton's answer is for educational purposes only and is not intended to constitute medical advice.  The information provided should not be relied upon as a substitute for consultations with a qualified health professional who may be familiar with your individual medical needs.

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Lasers can treat redness and scarring from previous laser treatments

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I know it sounds odd but lasers can be excellent in improving results from previous laser treatments.  Redness responds well to IPL (not technically a laser but similar).  Scarring and irregular pigment can respond to Fraxel Dual or fractional CO2 laser depending on the character of the scar. Raised scars may need CO2,  flat or thin scars may need Fraxel.  Overall the message is that improvement can be achieved in many cases with the newer lasers and techniques when done by an experienced physician.

Susan Van Dyke, MD
Paradise Valley Dermatologic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

Lasers can help old laser problems of redness and scarring

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A combination of fractional laser (Starlux Icon XD) (Fraxel 1550) and vascular laser (pulsed dye, ND:YAG) or IPL can greatly help redness and scarring from previous laser treatment and acne.

Margaret Weiss, MD
Baltimore Dermatologic Surgeon
3.9 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.