Fractional carbon dioxide laser – resurfacing skin with less downtime?
Article medically reviewed by Dr. Gavin Chan (MBBS, cosmetic doctor, liposuctionist)
Templestowe Lower, Berwick and Beaumaris Clinics
Dr. Gavin Chan has a background in intensive care, anaesthesia, and emergency medicine. Since 2005, Dr. Chan has provided cosmetic procedures, including anti-wrinkle injections, dermal fillers, liposuction and laser treatments. He is a doctor trainer for various dermal fillers and anti-wrinkle injections. Read More
The carbon dioxide laser skin resurfacing first emerged in the 1990s and was hailed as a revolutionary means to rejuvenate the face. To this day, it remains as the ‘gold standard’ for facial skin resurfacing, but then why is performed so uncommonly by only a few doctors? Although the results from carbon dioxide laser resurfacing are second to none, the recovery period, especially in today’s society, has been deemed to be unpalatable by most people. Recovery periods after carbon dioxide laser resurfacing can range from weeks to months depending on the intensity of the treatment performed. In today’s society, where time becoming increasingly valuable, people are reluctant to undergo such a procedure. Furthermore, risks such as scarring and hypopigmentation (excessive whitening of the skin) were common.
More recently, fractional carbon dioxide lasers have emerged to help strike a favourable compromise between obtaining results and reducing the recovery period required. You may have heard of lasers such as the Fraxel laser which was one of the pioneer lasers to use fractional technology. Fractional lasers are aptly named as they only treat a ‘fraction’ of the skin. They fire small columns of laser energy into the skin and leave the skin adjacent to these columns untouched, and this allows a quicker recovery whilst still producing good results within the skin.
Fractional carbon dioxide lasers are the latest in the generation of fractionated lasers and will possibly be the new way to resurface skin, reduce wrinkles, and acne scarring.
At The Victorian Cosmetic Institute, we are in the process of evaluating the various machines available and will be getting one in the next few months based on our research.
For more information on skin resurfacing, visit our webpage on this topic by clicking on the link below;