Sun damage, acne scars and birthmarks are hardly skin flaws exclusive to aging, but the effects can leave a young person feeling self-conscious and looking much older than he is. True age-defining blotches, fine lines, wrinkles, warts, enlarged oil glands and yellowish or grayish skin discolorations and liver spots can leave older people searching for ways to undo the natural signs of aging.
Prior to 2008, laser skin resurfacing techniques were also known as Laser Peel, Laser Vaporization and Lasabrasion. They were most often used in extreme cases of acne because the treatments themselves caused discomfort, bruising and significant bleeding, leading to several weeks of recovery.
However, since 2008, using a safer, gentler procedure known as MiXto Fractional CO2 laser skin resurfacing, doctors have performed over 400,000 skin resurfacing procedures in the U.S. This new and improved high quality laser offers advantages over traditional approaches that not only bring about outstanding results sometimes in a single treatment, but cut down on the recovery time to as little as just a few days.
MiXto's Power of Light
In keeping with Regenesis' commitment to using only the most cutting-edge, anti-aging and aesthetic technologies, micro-fractional laser skin resurfacing is an outpatient procedure that uses concentrated pulses of laser beams scattered precisely and rapidly on the skin producing a precise pattern of micro-injury. The heat from the laser simultaneously stimulates the growth of new collagen fibers so that during the healing process, new skin cells replace the damaged area which rejuvenates the skin. This results in tighter, younger looking skin for older patients and a clear complexion for young patients!
CO2 laser treatments can also correct uneven pigmentation, precancerous spots and many other skin imperfections such as benign lesions.
The precision of the CO2 laser minimizes the exposure to heat the surrounding skin undergoes, but allows Dr. Lee to target a higher power laser deeper into the tissue for creases, wrinkles and scars that are more pronounced. Because the procedure is so controlled, there is less exposure to heat damage to the rest of the skin, significantly decreasing recovery time.
Depending on the extent of damage, MiXto Fractional CO2 laser skin resurfacing can take from a half-hour up to two hours.
Minimal Side Effects
Most patients describe the procedure as equivalent to sunburn, but as a veteran anesthesiologist, Dr. Lee may recommend using a mild topical numbing cream, and if performing a full facial treatment, sedation may be recommended.
Dr. Lee will discuss any limitations or side effects involved in micro-fracturing. He may prescribe an anti-viral medication if you are susceptible to cold sores or fever blisters in the mouth area, since some patients experience an outbreak following laser skin resurfacing treatments. Regenesis requests that you do not take any medications or supplements like aspirin, ibuprofen, or vitamin E that affect blood clotting for 10 days prior and smokers should quit smoking two weeks before and after the procedure since smoking prolongs healing. Dr. Lee may also prescribe an antibiotic to prevent bacterial infections.
Some bandaging may be necessary and Dr. Lee will prescribe an ointment to prevent scabbing. A little swelling is normal and Dr. Lee may prescribe steroids to manage swelling around your eyes. An extra pillow for sleeping at night will also ease swelling.
Most patients experience itching or stinging for 12 to 24 hours after micro-fracturing and the skin will become dry and peel a few days later. The skin will be lighter for a while after the procedure and the patient should use the "broad-spectrum" sunblock as prescribed to block all ultraviolet rays and protect the skin. The patient should keep the "new skin" well moisturized using the recommended product available at Regenesis. Check out our product page for more information.
Once healed, the patient will want to discuss the recommended skin care products and option of follow-up non-fractional laser treatments with Dr. Lee for even longer-term results.
If you believe skin-resurfacing surgery is right for you, Dr. Charles Lee can carefully analyze your skin condition to determine if you are a candidate for the MixTo CO2 laser procedure.