Laser for Scars on Native American Skin?


I am 25 years old and I'm pretty sure I have ice pic scars on my cheeks left over from acne. I am Native American with dark medium-dark skin. I have already had a number of Microdermabrasion treatments as well as Chemical Peels and so forth.

I've seen a little improvement, but nothing seems to be working. I'm ready to give up. Should I try laser? If so which one would be good for my skin type?

Doctor Answers 1

Lasers for scars on Native-American Skin

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Although some of the newer fractionated CO2 lasers can help with acne scarring and can safely be used on individuals with darker skin tones, they do not do a good job for ice-pick type scarring unless they are combined punch removal of the individual pitted scars.

I would consider spot phenol application to the individual ice-pick scars to stimulate collagen growth. I have had success with this approach. You would expect to see the treated areas becoming very dark brown/purple, then red after a few weeks. The redness would fade after several weeks to months. You should notice improvement in the depth of scarring after a few months and improvement would continue to occur 1 year after the initial treatments. Saline subcision can be added once the ice-pick scars become more shallow.

Good luck.

San Diego Dermatologist

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