Erbium Yag for Acne Scars?

I have been offered a combination of Pixel laser and Erbium Yag 2940 traditional laser for 2 or 3 sessions of each at monthly intervals for acne scarring, red marks and a little sun damage. Would this be effective at solving my issues or are other lasers such as Active FX and Fraxel more suited to the job?

Doctor Answers 3

No data on what is best for acne scars at this time

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There are many systems used for acne scars including full field carbon dioxide, erbium and YSGG; as well as fractional non-ablative such as Pixel and Fraxel Restore; and ablative fractional such as erbium (sciton profractional), carbon dioxide and YSGG.

Very confusing for docs and patients. Data is out there but difficulty is in comparing results based upon acne scars and skin types. Overall, fractional seems to be better than full field for acne scars. My preference for acne scars is the Sciton Erbium Profractional, a very versatile system. In some skin types (Asian, especially), some data suggests non-ablative Fractional may be best.

Boca Raton Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 45 reviews

Best Laser for Acne Scars

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For deeper or more serious acne scars, the Erbium Yag is best. The Sciton Erbium:Yag laser is used in the operating room under anesthesia as it treats the deepest layers of skin, and can achieve extraordinary results in appropriate patients. This laser can be used in darker skinned patients and produces outstanding results for acne scarring, fine or deeper skin wrinkles, enlarged pores, and irregular skin pigmentation. Healing afterwards is generally uneventful, consisting of what looks like a deep sunburn that is treated with topical lubricants for 7 to 10 days, at which time the skin is healed. Skin pinkness can persist for weeks, and is minimized by topical steroid crèmes. A thorough consultation with a board certified doctor is necessary to decide what laser skin resurfacing treatment plan is most suited to address your needs.

Laser for acne scars

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There are many laser out there for acne scars.  They range from light based to nonablative to ablative to fractionated ablative lasers.  The goal is to match the tool to the job at hand.  For deeper scars it makes sense that deeper lasers will show more benefit while for shallow scars some of the more superficial or fractionated lasers will do the work nicely with less downtime.  The key is to trust in your doctor and their experience and look at their results in their other patients.  Treating acne scars can be a challenging but rewarding experience for doctors. We all have patients that are so happy with their results and so pleased that they want the world to know what was done for them.  They give us permission to share their pictures and these should help you to decide if what you see is what you hope for and expect. If so, then that doctor should be able to help you meet your goals.

Shawn Allen, MD
Boulder Dermatologist

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.