Do acne come back after laser treatment?

Doctor Answers 6

Is acne cured by laser treatment?

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Although Fractional laser resurfacing is an effective treatment for acne scarring, acne is NOT cured by laser treatment. 

If you have active acne, prescription medicines may be needed to control acne. It is important to have acne controlled with medications before laser treatment for scars. 


Key to an effective laser treatment are these considerations in acne:

•      Avoid if treated with Roaccutane in the last 6-months

•      Postpone if active acne

•      Realistic expectations for improvement, for acne several treatments may be required, each building on the last

•      Safety protocol for every patient

•      Clear post laser resurfacing instructions

•      Use of bio-technology to enhance recovery after laser

•      Use of test-patch of laser to avoid risk

•      An experienced doctor who has used laser resurfacing for many years with good results

•      State-of-the-art modern laser designed for safety and fast recovery

Acne Can Return After Laser Treatment

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Light- and laser-based treatments won't cure active acne, so you may see additional breakouts after a laser procedure. Laser treatments may temporarily worsen acne, but they can ultimately be beneficial for many patients. Combining light and heat energy improves the appearance of both active acne and acne scars, which are treated deeper in the skin.

Otto Weiglein, FRCSC
Burlington Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Laser Skin Resurfacing

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Thank you for your question. Laser skin resurfacing is used to treat acne scarring and will not halt the development and growth of any acne. Acne is certainly able to come back. I suggest that you consult with your board certified facial plastic surgeon as to great acne treatments, including accutane. 
Best wishes,

Ross A. Clevens, MD
Melbourne Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 124 reviews

Acne and laser

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Acne is not cured by any laser treatment. Therefore, acne may continue after laser treatments. In fact, acne may temporarily worsen after laser resurfacing. Prescription medicines may be needed to control acne. It is best to have acne controlled with medications before pursuing laser treatment for scars. 

Renuka Diwan, MD
Cleveland Dermatologic Surgeon

Yes, laser is not great for acne.

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Isotretitinoin or Accutane is the ideal treatment for acne, however a new device called AGNES uses RF to destroy oil glands may hit the US market in 2018. 

Other treatments like Kleresca will be in the US in 2017, however red light, blue light, V Beam, IPL and Omnilux are all light based treatments that can help reduce, but not cure acne. 

All the best,

Dr Davin Lim
Laser dermatologist
Brisbane, Australia. 

Acne Treatment- Lasers, Microneedling, Radiofrequency, Blue Light

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Treating with isotretionin is the only way to get rid of acne completely. Alternative treatment includes lasers, microneedling, radio frequency treatments, blue light and others for acne. I suggest consulting with an experienced board certified dermatologist. Best, Dr. Emer

Jason Emer, MD
Los Angeles Dermatologic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 207 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.