After Two Courses of Accutane, Is Fraxel More Risky Now?

The last time I took Accutane was about 15 years ago, but it has been suggested in user review that having take more than one course of Accutane weakens the skin and Fraxel or any other laser resurfacing is more likely to cause damage. I would like to finally have something done with my acne scars but I've read so many negative reviews that I'm a bit scared.

Doctor Answers 5

15 Years Post Accutane, OK to Get Fraxel Treatments

After 15 years, having a series of Fraxel treatments should be no problem.  I have no reservations in say this!  Depending on how aggressive the provider is treating your face you should heal within 7 to 10 days after each treatment.  Fraxel is a great laser for skin resurfacing. 

Good luck.  Hope this helps.  Dr. Grant Stevens    

Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 145 reviews

Fraxel after accutane

Your Accutane therapy was completed so long ago that it should not be factor in your treatment.  I will generally wait about 6-months after completion of Accutane to perform any resurfacing 15-years is a long time.  Hope this helpful and all the best to you, Dr. Vartanian

A. John Vartanian, MD
Glendale Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Fraxel after Accutane

Although many physicians have waited for six to twelve months after their patients have completed a course of Accutane prior to performing facial laser resurfacing in the last several years, this concept has been rechallenged in the literature. REgardless, as there is substantial time since your last Accutane treatment, you may consider Fraxel or other resurfacing. Of course, there always is a risk of scarring, despite small, even without having taken Accutane.  You can consider having the physician perform a test area and observe the healing prior to undergoing a full facial treatment. If the area of the test doesnt heal well then you wouldn't have the treatment but if your skin passes the test, there still could be a risk of scarring on the rest of the face.  See a board-certified physician who is experienced in facial resurfacing.  Multiple Fraxel Restore treatments with deep energy setttings may be more effective than one Fraxel Repair CO2 (carbon dioxide) laser treatment.

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 37 reviews

Fraxel After Accutane

Accutane, even more than one course, does not weaken the skin.  Laser resurfacing is not advised until 6 to 12 months after a course of Accutane, but that is because of delayed wound healing, not fragility of the skin.  

Timothy G. Rodgers, MD, FAAD
Frisco Dermatologist
4.8 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

15 years later, you should be good

The delayed healing complication from Accutane is short lived: about one year. This is from reduction in the sebaceous gland activity. If you are very nervous, ask for a test spot and see if you are healed in 5-7 days.

Mary P. Lupo, MD
New Orleans Dermatologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 18 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.