Unsure About Doctor's Fraxel Re:pair Skills

Is it safe to have Fraxel Re:pair done by a board-certified plastic surgeon who has only done it 9 times? I know this doctor is very smart but I'm having second thoughts about his Fraxel Re:pair skill.

Doctor Answers 7

Experience is extremely important with Fraxel Repair

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

First off, the Fraxel Re:pair is not your everyday laser. Undergoing this procedure is a MAJOR laser procedure. It should be done only in hands of very skilled physicians (not nurses or PAs) with major laser experience. The patient needs to be prepared for the downtime (5-7 full days) and recovery time (2-3 months). Along the road to recovery, there are sometimes bumps in the road that require experience to recognize and then treat with different oral or topical medications.

Take a look at my results. There are very few physicians posting their results. The company is using several of these for their webinars. Ask your doc for their before and afters - that's the true guage of how they are doing.

A paper is soon to be published with my results and observations about maximizing outcomes.

Panama City Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 75 reviews

Is Experience Important in Choosing a Fraxel re:pair Physician?

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Hi again JJ,

Fraxel re:pair is a very powerful CO2 laser. If a physician has had experience with traditional CO2 lasers then there is no problem with having the treatment after the physician has performed a few treatments. The step from traditional CO2 lasers to Fraxel re:pair is small, the step from no CO2 laser experience to Fraxel re:pair is great.

If a physician has had no experience with CO2 lasers then 9 treatments is a little early on the learning curve. It is good that you are considering a surgeon trained in a cosmetic specialty.

You are doing the right thing by choosing your treating physician carefully. Be well.

Dr. P

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

Experience is critical

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Like most things in life, you are best served by someone with lots of experience. This is a procedure that in technique dependent, and complications can occur. As a physician that performs this procedure often, I can tell you that I learn something new with every patient I treat. You probably wouldn't let someone cut your hair that has only done it 9 times, and you most certainly wouldn't let someone operate on you if they had only operated 9 times. Go with your gut instinct. Be well, Dr. Groff

William Groff, DO
San Diego Dermatologist
4.9 out of 5 stars 51 reviews

Experience is key in this procedure

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

As a dermatologist, it is my view that dermatologists are particularly suited to perform this procedure. While some plastic surgeons may have the skills necessary to deal with the recovery period, most don't. The recovery period will make or break this procedure and will determine whether you have a good result.

Believe me, this is not a procedure for novices as there are quite a few pitfalls that can end up ruining a good result if managed incorrectly. You need to consider the experience and qualifications of your surgeon or you may have troubles afterwards.

Joel Schlessinger, MD
Omaha Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 50 reviews

Fraxel Repair requires a doctor with experience and skilled in laser treatments

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Fraxel Repair requires a skilled and experienced doctor, such as dermatologist or plastic surgeon. Choosing a good doctor with experience performing laser treatments will help to ensure quality results. Asking for before and after photos can help to gauge the skill of the doctor.

Sanusi Umar, MD
Redondo Beach Dermatologic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

Fraxel repair should be safe if the surgeon has experience

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

If the plastic surgeon has performed hundreds of laser treatements, including Fraxel re:store or ablative CO2 laser, then I would think he/she would be qualified. The re:pair laser has only been commercially available since January 2008 so not that many people have experience with it anyway.

If you trust him/her, then I would feel comfortable. Choosing the right indications, settings and managing the post treatment recovery are most important for the success of the treatment.

Min S. Ahn, MD, FACS
Westborough Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 35 reviews

Everyone Starts Somewhere / Judgement Trumps Experience

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

New devices, drugs and therapies, and technological advances are coming to medicine in general at a very rapid pace. Literally hundreds of new or updated or upgraded lasers alone have hit the marketplace over the last decade. Everything that is now "old hat" was new at some point, and being used by some practitioner for the first time.

A well-trained surgeon or physician who educates himself about the newest technical and therapeutic advances, and who exercises good judgement in selecting the proper circumstances in which to employ the newest advance, is much more critical than the device itself. Most often, the new device has been studied and tried in simulation by the doctor before it is used for the first time in practice. But even the pilot of a jumbo jet has to climb into the real cockpit and out of the simulator eventually, so the training and judgement is what is important, and experience comes later.

If you trust your doctor, you should believe that he wouldn't do anything to harm you, or that he did not himself feel capable of doing well.

Athleo Louis Cambre, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 6 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.