Which laser should I get done? The Fraxel or the Vbeam? (photo)

I have a picture with one side of my cheek which has marks and discoloration left from acne. Which laser would be best to get rid of this? My doctor said the fraxel, but I'm having second thoughts and thinking maybe the vbeam might be a better choice.

Doctor Answers 7

Acne and redness from acne

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Inflammatory acne often leaves many patients red or discolored.  If you still have active acne it should be treated first.  Lasers such as the V-Beam helps with inflammation and redness.  Fraxel laser will treat the scars.  Please consult a board certified dermatologist who is experienced with scar treatments and these lasers.

Acne laser treatments

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Judging from your picture there are a number of things going on at once. There is the issue of active acne characterized by nodules and redness, and there is residual scaring. In general, I recommend trying to clear up the acne first before going after the scaring. When it comes to acne concern, there is no magic bullet laser that will rid you of this condition, rather it is best handled with a combination medical therapy using a combination of topicals and systemic prescription meds together with Vbeam for residual redness or IPL with suction extraction such as Acclera or Isolaz. When the acne is controlled, then I go on to treat with Fractionated laser treatment using both CO2 and Erbium modalities. There are a number of equally good devices such as Erbium based Fraxel Repair and DOT CO2 by Deka.

Arthur N. Falk, MD
Albany Facial Plastic Surgeon

Fraxel and Vbeam

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From your picture it looks like you have a combination of red scars and indented scars. Vbeam laser stands for Vascular beam this laser will help improve your redness. If wanted to improve the indented scars then Fraxel would help with those scars. Many times patients have a combination of issues and that is why I recommend multiple lasers to address each of the problems so my patients get a complete treatment and are much happier at the end of their sessions. When you consult with your Board Certified Dermatologist be specific about what you want to improve to ensure that your concern is being addressed.

Nissan Pilest, MD
Irvine Dermatologic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

Vbeam and Fraxel together help scars

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From your photos it looks like you need a resurfacing laser such as fraxel to deeply penetrate and improve the texture and depth of the scars. If they are red then the Vbeam laser will help reduce the redness. I often do these laser in the same treatment session

Vbeam laser for red acne scars

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I think you are a very good candidate (based on the photo) for Vbeam laser treatment. The Vbeam will reduce/remove the redness and improve the overall texture and tone of the skin. To make a significant change in the depth of your scars, however, you will need to add a resurfacing laser to the regimen. I often perform these lasers together in the same treatment session for best results (Vbeam and an erbium resurfacing laser for example). The Vbeam laser may be done first if you prefer a less invasive type of procedure but it will require more than one treatment. I would recommend at least 4-5 treatments to make the biggest impact. Good luck.

Jason R. Lupton, MD
San Diego Dermatologic Surgeon

Best Laser Treatment for Acne Scars

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Hi E,

The best treatment for acne scars is fractionated CO2 laser, we prefer Fraxel repair laser for our acne scar patients. V-Beam laser is good for red spots. Good luck and be well.

Dr. P

Michael A. Persky, MD
Encino Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

How to Treat Acne Scarring? Laser or other Treatment?

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I approach these kinds of problems from the inside out, first making sure there is minimal ongoing sebaceous or acne activity. This might involve preparing the skin the 4-8 weeks of retinols, exfoliants and oil control agents. Then one could consider external treatments, such as laser. The V beam is a pulsed dye laser, mostly used for port-wine stains and vascular lesions, not skin resurfacing. A laser that uses controlled ablation would be my first choice and there are many, fraxel being a term used for a particular company. More than one treatment would be needed in all likelihood, so I prefer a micro-abaltive rather than a fully ablative CO2 laser, which lends itself better to multiple treatments. Non-ablative erbium lasers like the Palomar Lux 1540 can also work, and take 6 or more sessions. In general the ablative lasers give better results, sooner. Pre-treating with a retinol and pigment control agent like hydroquinone helps the healing and decreases the risko f post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation.

Robert M. Lowen, MD
Mountain View Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 54 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.