FRAXEL ® CO2 FRACTIONAL LASER RESURFACING


The goal of laser resurfacing is to replace aging skin with skin that is new and revitalised. The CO2 laser has proved to give very effective results in skin rejuvenation compared to older more aggressive skin treatments that caused a longer recovery time. Today, thanks to modern technology, we have achieved impressive results, ensuring a smoother recovery, which allows the patient to return to their normal activities very soon after having this treatment.

This laser can be programmed with different levels of intensity and it can be used in single or multiple sessions (depending on the degree of skin damage and the convenience of the patient). The general rule is: the higher the energy of the laser, the higher the thermal effect and the better the results. How can fractional laser be classified? It is classified by “ablative” and “non ablative”. An ablative laser strips the outer layer of the skin while a non ablative laser penetrates the skin. The fractional ablative lasers are confined to the most superficial layer, the epidermis, leaving the skin intact.

Used devices:

1. CO2 Fractional Ablative Laser Smatxide Dot ® (Deka Laser)

2. Pixel Fractional Ablative Laser Pixel CO2 Laser ® (LBT)

3. Fractional Non-Ablative System StarLux 1540 or Erbium Glass ® (Palomar)

4. Fraxel ® (Laser CO2 Fractional Non-Ablative)

How do these work? These lasers are based on the emission of thousands of micro-beams of light that have great affinity for water present in the skin. This causes rapid heating which, in turn, causes destruction of the outer layer of the skin in columns (the "thermal column"). This creates a small injury.


The energy that is transmitted by the laser, acts directly on aged skin and leads to heating of deeper layers of the skin leading to a stimulation in the production of collagen.


It increases the density of elastin leading to improved firmness of the skin.


The Fractional CO2 laser is usually performed in sessions and therefore after every new treatment more collagen will be produced. It is estimated that after the third application, facial skin should have been treated in its entirety. Its advantages include the speed of recovery and less discomfort during the procedure (which can be improved by with the use of an anesthetic cream).

ABOUT THE TREATMENT

The patient should not be tanned. Approximately 90 minutes before the procedure a topical anaesthetic can be applied to the face (or the area where the laser will be performed) to make the patient more comfortable during the procedure. For patients who are more sensitive to pain,a muscle relaxant can be given prior to the procedure (it is not possible to drive on the same day as this).

After the procedure, the skin is red and a burning sensation can usually be felt. Support treatments are used in clinic such as the use of a soothing facial mask and/or a phototherapy lamp (LED) which will be programmed for the comfort of the patient. Patients should only leave the clinic after overcoming the unpleasant burning sensation. Creams that are to be used, soon after treatment, are recommended and detailed instructions in writing are provided.

HOW MANY TREATMENTS ARE NEEDED?

Approximately 3-4 sessions are recommended with at least 30 days between each session. Results can be seen soon after treatment with the skin improving for 6 months post-procedure.

What is recommended after this procedure?  

• Immediately after the treatment, the patient feels a sensation resembling sunburn due to inflammation. This decreases after two or three days..

• On the day after the application, the skin takes on a tanned tone (and can also be red) this lasts from 5 to 7 days.

• A phase of peeling occurs that resembles skin peeling after sunburn. It is important that small crusts fall from the skin naturally, without being taken off, which can cause injury and possible complications. This phase will continue until the 10th day or so.

• After the peeling phase has finished the skin maybe red fro 2-4 weeks.

• Women can apply makeup and men can shave from the first day after treatment.

•It is not advised to clean or exfoliate the skin vigorously during this time.

•Gentle moisturising, mild soap and sunscreen in the first two weeks are recommended.

• Constant use of sunscreen is necessary because the new skin is still healing, is more sensitive and susceptible to pigmentation more easily. Therefore sun exposure is strictly prohibited during this time.

•The use of routine creams can be resumed after some time with dermatological advise.

• The patient should stay out of the sun for at least 2-3 months post-treatment. Never forget sunscreen with a high factor of protection.

•The results appear gradually, after 6 months the improvement can be seen.