What is Fraxel Laser Treatment ?
Fraxel® Laser Treatment is a “fractional” treatment that produces thousands of deep, tiny columns in your skin, called microscopic treatment zones (mtz). The term “fractional” means that only a percentage of the skin surface is affected with each pass of the laser. Fraxel intensively treats only some of the epidermal cells without affecting all of them. This method of fractionally treating the skin reduces healing time and promotes the skin’s natural process for creating new, healthier tissue to replace the damaged cells.
The Fraxel laser has been approved by the FDA to treat multiple skin conditions anywhere on the face or body, including
- age/sun spots
- actinic keratosis
- acne scarring on the face, shoulders or back
- melasma (the mask of pregnancy)
- eye wrinkles (crow’s feet)
It’s safe, easy and delivers results. Fraxel was featured as one of the Top Beauty Breakthroughs of 2005
How is Fraxel laser different from other laser treatments?
Before Fraxel laser treatment, there were two types of available laser treatments. Fully ablative laser treatment involves vaporization of entire layers of skin cells at a very high temperature. This treatment is very effective but requires a healing period. The Fraxel re:store laser is almost a hybrid but does not remove skin. Instead the laser beams create tiny columns of intense heat which cause the skin to go into repair mode, improving texture, color and creating a collagen building response.
Fraxel treatments strive to offer for Orange County patients a measure of the effectiveness of ablative lasers with the benefits of the gentler, non-ablative lasers.
Treatments for acne scarring
These treatments are generally more aggressive and may mean two to three days of time off for swelling or redness. Dr. Sikorski will help you understand how Fraxel Laser Treatment will fit into your schedule.
What are the risks of Fraxel Laser Treatments?
Swelling and redness are the most common side effects from treatment. If swelling does occur, it is minimal and will subside within a day or two. Redness may occur and will fade within a few days. There is a very limited risk of infection or scarring.
The Fraxel Procedure
Preparation and Procedure
First, a white anesthetic cream is applied to your entire face, chest, arms or the area to be treated, to numb your skin. This anesthetic ointment is left on for approximately 60 minutes prior to treatment in order for the anesthetic to take full effect.
Then Dr. Sikorski glides the laser over your skin multiple times. A chilled air system blows very cold air on your skin to help make the treatment more comfortable. The procedure takes between 20 to 25 minutes for a full face. The anesthetic ointment is washed off immediately after the treatment.
How many treatments will I need?
Clinical studies suggest that on average, an effective treatment regimen is 3 to 5 sessions, spaced about 2 to 4 weeks apart. Depending upon your condition and schedule, you may choose to space treatment sessions even further apart. Results are both immediate and progressive.
For OC patients who prefer to have a single treatment and a flexible enough schedule for about a week of downtime, the MiXto CO2 laser is an alternative option. For those with a desire for full performance laser, Dr. Sikorski offers surgical laser treatment with the Sciton fully ablative laser.
Is Fraxel Laser Treatment painful?
Most Orange County patients describe the treatment as having an intense “prickling” sensation. The topical anesthetic ointment and air cooling alleviates a great part of the discomfort. Fraxel is not painless, so do expect some minimal level of heat discomfort.
What should I expect after Fraxel Laser Treatment?
During the first 24 hours after treatment, your skin may feel as though it is sunburned, and it will appear pink or red. Make-up can be worn to reduce the sunburned appearance. Your skin will naturally bronze over the next week or two. As you continue treatment, the sunburned to bronze conditions will repeat. Just like a natural sunburn, your skin will flake and exfoliate normally. Using a moisturizer will help reduce the appearance of dry flakes.
What precautions should I take after treatment?
Wearing sunscreen of SPF 30 or higher twice a day is especially important. Avoid direct sun exposure during the healing process and for at least 3 months after treatment. Wearing wide-brimmed hats is highly recommended when out in the elements.
Are you ready to improve your appearance?
Related and Alternative Treatments
- Cosmelan for melasma and hyperpigmentation
- Chemical Peels for exfoliation, skin discoloration and light wrinkling
- Omnilux Revive for skin rejuvenation
- Photo Dynamic Therapy for rough actinic keratoses
- MiXto Laser for sundamage, wrinkling and tightening
- Sciton Laser for full skin resurfacing
Cosmetic Surgery and Dermatology for the Greater Orange County Area.
Dr. Sikorski offers cosmetic & dermatology procedures to patients in all Orange County communities, including Aliso Viejo, Anaheim, Irvine, Laguna Niguel, Lake Forest, Mission Viejo, San Clemente, and San Juan Capistrano. Schedule your own consultational appointment today!