Male Voice: There are several different categories of skin resurfacing.

The first category to become available in the United States was actually the first cosmetic laser treatment we had available at all; which was resurfacing with a very aggressive device known as the CO2 Laser.

Some patients had prolonged redness, were over treated, and didn't get the outcome they'd hope for. This led to a generalized decline in the interest in laser resurfacing; that for a period of a few years in the late '90s, we really didn't do anywhere near as much resurfacing as we had just a few years earlier.

We then moved to devices that were not aggressive at all, the advantage was there was no down time, no recovery time, no disasters, but also no results. In the earlier part of this century, a newer form of resurfacing was introduced; which were referred to as a Minimally Invasive Resurfacing. It's performed in the office sometimes with the aid of topical anesthetic and sometimes with no anesthesia at all, and does not require a trip to the operating room and general anesthesia as was the case with the earlier resurfacing procedures.

The down side to this generation of laser treatments is that in order to achieve reasonable outcomes you have to undergo four to six treatments; you want to do one treatment and get a better result. This led to the development of our current latest generation of treatments; which is a more aggressive style resurfacing, not as aggressive as where we started in 1994, better than what we were getting even with multiple treatment sessions with the minimally invasive, but not as aggressive as what we had back then.

This newest generation of resurfacing treatments, does require about a week of recovery time, but after a week to ten days people can typically resume their normal activities and look really very natural. These newer laser resurfacing treatments can be performed in an office setting, usually just with the aid of topical anesthesia or numbing cream. The recovery period is one which is marked not by discomfort but just by not looking very pretty.

You need to keep Vaseline or a similar agent on your face for about a week, and while you can work from your computer, talk on the phone and transact business in that manner; you're probably not going to want to be meeting with clients, calling on customers, or even going out socially for a week or so after the treatments.

If you skin is brown, wrinkled or discolored, you feel like it just doesn't look as fresh as it used to, there's a laser resurfacing option for you.


Laser Skin Resurfacing Categories

Dr. Brian Biesman discusses the various laser skin resurfacing devices and treatment options.