My struggle with acne started at about 13. My...
My struggle with acne started at about 13. My mother and older brother had struggled with acne all through their teens and into adulthood and I knew that even when I got the horrendous acne under control the scars would inevitably follow. By the time I was an adult I had learned how to manage the breakouts and the dream of having acne free skin evolved in to the dream of scar free skin. It is this dream and slog of research that has led me here... and so my journey starts.
The hunt for the right doctor!
After searching and researching and tons of self education I had learned two things: 1.There are many different approaches to scar treatment and 2. The greatest influencing factor on the success of any of these procedures is the physician performing it. After hours of lurking on many sites searching for people who had traveled down this same path i was on I came across a review for acne scar treatment on real self by a young man with remarkable results. I read through his reviews and was struck by the attention to detail and multifaceted approach his physician had taken with him. I looked into this Dr. Rahimi and I found that the more I learned the more I liked. Dr Rahimi writes that he prefers a more natural and holistic approach to cosmetic procedures and his ideas on the use of multiple different approaches to treat the whole problem just makes sense! I knew in the end that even though it would be about a 2-3 hour drive I had to see this doctor. With butterflies in my tummy I phoned the office, a friendly voice answered, and within minutes deed was done; my appointment set. First step- check!
Initial Consultation with Dr Rahimi
March first at 10am my Husband and I arrived at the Los Angeles office of Dr Rahimi. We were greeted by friendly down to earth front office staff and asked to sign in then offered a seat in a pleasant low key waiting room. After several minutes had passed we were called back into an exam room and shortly after joined by Dr Rahimi. The Dr took a seat across from us introduced himself and gave us a quick background on his ideals and approaches to cosmetic procedures. He asked me to tell him what I was unhappy with and what my expectations and hopes were for improvement. When I had said all that I could he asked to examine my skin and after a short examination he broke it down for me very simply. He listed for me the steps he would suggest and then showed me several B&A photos of others who had followed a similar treatment plan. He went briefly over pricing and explained that the price would include everything we had discussed. He said his goodbyes and his staff member replaced him to finalize details of payment and scheduling as well as to give us the detailed pre procedure instructions. And like that step two-check!
The master plan!!!
So this is the plan broken down...
Step 1: blood work 3 weeks pre-procedure.
Step2: Retin-A and Hydroquinone cream regimen for 2 weeks leading up to laser procedure.
Step 3: Microdermabrasion 1 week prior to laser procedure.
Step 4: Vitamin C supplement starting 5 days prior to procedure.
Step 5: Reduce sodium intake at least 48 hours pre procedure.
Step 6: Acyclovir starting the night before procedure.
Step 7: The "big" one! Multi laser approach including Mixto CO2 and pelleve.
Step 8: Heal! Lots of eucerin, coconut oil and patience!
Step 9: Wait and repeat as needed!!!
Dr Rahimi feels two rounds should give me good results though I won't be surprised if it's more :)
* it is worth noting that because I am a vegetarian I was started on a protein supplement 1 month pre-procedure to ensure proper healing. (My favorite is MRM Veggie Elite Chocolate Mocha Protein powder made with unsweetened almond milk. I also started a collagen supplement)
Pre-procedure photos... Eeeek!
This is my "before" album. Ugh!
Pre-laser Microdermabrasion and facial.
I've been following my regimen of Retin-A and Hydroquinone at home for the last week. Tuesday I went in for my pre laser facial. The Dr explained that this step would give a deep clean and prep the skin for the laser allowing for a more effective treatment. The facial started out very soothing and relaxing with warm steam blowing in my face and gentle scrubbing then the lady explained that I had quite a few blackheads that needed to be cleared. This step was painful but tolerable. I am not certain exactly what was going on except that a needle like tool was used to extract the buildup in the clogged pores. This was all finished off with a round of microdermabrasion which was not painful at all. Step 3-check! One week to the big day!!!
1 day post Mixto and Pelleve!
I have a full review under Mixto but I wanted it all to be linked together for my B&A pics so her I am immediately after and 1 day out :)
Morning after tx
Day 2 (morning after treatment)
6 week update!
Im very happy with my results! Still have some redness that is more obvious on the jaw line and worse with heat or physical exertion but it lightens everyday! Skin looks best in the mornings but still significant improvement from before!
2 years + update!
I wanted to give an update since a few people asked about long term results. I have only had one round of the laser treatment. The redness has gone away completely however I am still more sensitive to the sun and burn/tan more on my face than I did prior to treatment. I am most impressed with the scarring in my forehead as well as the improvement in the deep lines that were there. I'm not extremely happy with my results however I do see some improvement over the long term. Ideally I'd love for my face to look closer to it did at 6 weeks post without that awful redness, unfortunately as is so commonly reported as the swelling decreased much of the old scars reappeared. Overall I would do the treatment again and if I'm able to financially I would like to do a few more rounds to see just how good it could get! All photos on left are prior to laser in 2014 all photos on right are current from August 2016, 27 months post op. I used the same light for both pics however my current phone has a better camera and I'm tan from lots of summer fun.