What Treatment Should I Get for my Facial Scars?

I would like to have the scarring in the picture evaluated for the best treatment option. Would chemical peels or dermabrasion be a good option? I've already had 5 treatments of Fraxel Restore with no results on highest settings. Let me know your thoughts. All that I ask is for honesty. Thank you.

Doctor Answers 3

Acne scars

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For acne scarring, peels can be helpful. It doesn't look by the image you have provided that many are very deep. A few TCA peels should help minimize them.

You really need the scar evaluated properly before you follow any specific course of action.

Best Regards.

Orange Plastic Surgeon

Options for facial acne scars

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For the type of scars you have, here area few options:

  • CO2 Laser Resurfacing (full not fractionated)
  • Erbium Laser Resurfacing
  • Dermabrasion
  • Phenol Peel

All of these are options and you will find that not one practice specializes in them all. Make sure to attend several consultations and ask for pictures from the practitioners you visit. Seek out realistic expectations rather than big promises.

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

Facial acne scars

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I would consider Fraxel re:pair (fractionated, ablative CO2 laser), Active/deep FX (fractionated, ablative CO2 laser) or medium depth chemical peel. The results can be quite good for your type of scarring but in ethnic skin (less so in lighter skin) can also be associated with (usually) temporary or more long-term pigmentary problems. You need to know that any of these ablative procedures are associated with more pain and more down-time approx 1 week and you may have residual redness and/or pigmentation for weeks (a cover-up makeup can be worn). I do not think microdermabrasion would improve the scarring to your satisfaction. True dermabrasion would work, but few practitioners continue to perform that procedure. A technique called saline subcision (1-3 sessions at 4 week intervals) is another consideration. There is an expected side effect of bruising, but that typically resolves by 7-10 days.

Good luck.

Bryan K. Chen, MD
San Diego Dermatologist

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