Results after Fraxel?

I keep hearing that you need multiple treatments before seeing results with fraxel. Does this essentially mean I can expect to see no results after having 1 or 2 treatments? Would at least hyperpigmentation improve after the first treatment?

Doctor Answers 3

Fraxel for hyperpigmentation and number of treatments

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Fraxel is a fabulous laser for treating hyper pigmentation from the sun.  If you could post a photo it would be easier to see if you are a good candidate.  I have had many patients will mild sun damage who only required 1 treatment.  The number of treatments and the success of these treatments depends both on the degree of sun damage and your type of skin.  If the sun damage is from Melasma than I recommend Cosmelan.  Please consult a board certified dermatologist for the best cosmetic advice in determining if you are a good candidate for Fraxel.

I have performed many Fraxel Dual treatments and personally had the treatment myself. I like a single treatment.

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I do not believe it is possible to get the same results with multiple low-level treatments as can be achieved with one highly effective treatment. At the Gateway Aesthetic Institute most of our treatments are treated with both the Fraxel 1927nm and 1550nm (Dual) modalities with a fairly aggressive treatment. Patients look great in one week and are very pleased with the results. Even low-level treatments have some down time, so why not just get it done. I went to my Rotary Club meeting on day three when I looked the worst. No one seemed to care that I was recovering from a laser treatment.

Mark Taylor, MD
Salt Lake City Dermatologic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Fraxel Results

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Hi JAQ. The issue of when and if you would see results depends on what you look like before the treatment, whether or not you are a good candidate, how the treatment was done and what kind of expectations were set.

We find that most practices that offer Fraxel do a very mild form of treatment so that patients do not have a lot of downtime. While this is a good way of avoiding prolonged downtime, it may not be a good way of getting great results.

In our fractional laser resurfacing program, the expectation is that the patient will need a full week to recover. Because it is a deeper resurfacing, medications (Valium and Vicodin) are prescribed, numbing cream is used and dental blocks (injection of lidocaine) are also administered. Deeper resurfacing works better but is more painful, so if this does not sound like the type of anesthesia procedures you received then perhaps you are not getting a deep resurfacing.

Expectations are very important when it comes to laser procedures. Without photos it is difficult to tell if you are a good candidate for Fraxel laser resurfacing or not. We would need to see a photo and understand your expectations better to know if you are a good candidate.

Finally, while Fraxel is FDA approved for Melasma (it appears that you are Asian from a previous questions), we do not find Fraxel (or any other laser) to be a good solution for Melasma. We use high strength Hydroquinone because there is no cure for Melasma and we want to offer a more cost effective solution with better results. You can visit the link below to see results.

Harold J. Kaplan, MD
Los Angeles Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 7 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.