What does the term laser resurfacing mean?

“Laser Resurfacing” is a general term for using a laser to improve the skin. But, there are many different lasers used for laser resurfacing and many different ways of performing it. In the end, the result of a laser resurfacing procedure should be younger, fresher looking and improved skin. We use these procedures to improve acne (and other) scars, get rid of fine lines and tighten pore size.

What are the types of laser resurfacing?

Laser resurfacing comes in many varieties. Traditional CO2 laser resurfacing involved a deep resurfacing with excellent results, general anesthesia, a long recovery (several weeks) and the possibility of hypo-pigmentation (lightening of the skin). This procedure was favored until around 2005 when fractional lasers were introduced.

Fractional laser resurfacing (CO2 and Erbium) is the same type of light as traditional CO2 resurfacing, but instead of resurfacing 100% of the skin, the fractional lasers divided the beam of light into many smaller beams and kept part of the skin intact. This meant that patients could have the procedure without the same risk of lightening the skin and without the added expense of general anesthesia. Generally more procedures are required than traditional CO2 resurfacing, but risk has been dramatically reduced.

Non-ablative (no recovery time) laser resurfacing is a non-invasive method to stimulate the production of collagen resulting in improved skin texture. The difference between non-ablative resurfacing and traditional/fractional CO2 is that non-ablative resurfacing does not disrupt the epidermis (does not perforate the skin) and instead uses absorbed heat to stimulate collagen production.

Celibre Medical’s Laser Resurfacing

At Celibre Medical, we offer both non-ablative (no downtime) and fractional ablative (5-7 days of recovery) treatment to assist our patients in achieving their laser resurfacing goals. For non-ablative resurfacing, we use a combination of the Quantel Medical Aramis and Palomar Q-Yag V lasers. For fractional resurfacing, we use the Sciton Profractional.

The Practitioner Matters!

While the type of laser used is a factor in your result, most patients believe that getting a particular laser is more important than who is performing the treatment or how it’s being done. A laser is like a car – it doesn’t drive itself (at least not yet)! The practitioner determines how the treatment is performed and as such is the biggest factor in your result.


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