Skin Resurfacing and Micro-Needling
Fractionated Laser Resurfacing and Micro-Needling are used to decrease the appearance of sun damage, fine lines, wrinkles, and acne scarring while improving the overall texture and smoothness of the skin. They deliver a pattern of tiny dots creating an ablative and/or thermal effect without disturbing the surrounding skin. As these micro-columns heal, collagen synthesis and remodeling occur to produce smoother, brighter, more youthful looking skin.
What equipment is used?
Eclipse MicroPen™ Elite uses a sterile tip containing 12 tiny micro-needles to create ablative zones of injury
Alma® Pixel RF uses fractionated radiofrequency to create ablative and thermal zones of injury
Fraxel® re:store uses fractionated 1550nm erbium laser to create thermal zones of injury
SmartXide DOT CO2 uses fractionated CO2 laser to create ablative and thermal zones of injury
What will the procedure feel like?
Prior to the treatment, a topical anesthetic may be applied for 15-20 minutes. With topical anesthetic, the treatment is mildly painful and easily tolerated. After the anesthetic wears off, patients may feel a heat sensation similar to a sunburn.
Do I have to do anything to prepare in advance?
Tanned skin cannot be safely treated with laser resurfacing, so we ask that you avoid sun exposure for 4 weeks prior to your treatment and self-tanning products should not be applied to the treatment area 2 weeks prior. Some patients may be required to use a topical lightening cream for one month prior to treatment. If you have a history of cold sores, be sure to notify your provider prior to your appointment and he or she will prescribe a medication to take the night before that will reduce the likelihood of a breakout. If you are using any products containing a retinoid on the treatment area, we ask that you stop using them 5-7 days prior to your treatment.
What will I look like afterwards?
Downtime is dependent on the type of treatment performed. It can range from a couple days of mild redness, minimal swelling, and dryness to 10 days or more of intense redness, swelling, peeling, and scabbing. Your provider will instruct you on what skincare to use following the treatment until the skin is healed.
- MicroPen: 24-36 hours of mild redness, minimal swelling, pinpoint scabs
- Pixel RF: 2-3 days of moderate redness and swelling followed by 2-3 days of bronzing and dry skin
- Fraxel re:store: 2-3 days of moderate redness and swelling followed by 3-5 days of bronzing and dry skin
- DOT: 4-5 days of moderate/severe redness and swelling followed by 3-5 days of bronzing and dry skin (Madonna Lift for Eyes: 2-3 days of moderate redness and swelling followed by 2-3 days of bronzing and dry skin)
Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) can be added onto treatments to reduce downtime by approximately 50% and enhance results.
How many treatments are necessary?
A series of treatments are recommended, spaced 4-6 weeks apart.
- MicroPen (ablative): 3-6 treatments
- Pixel RF (ablative and thermal): 3-5 treatments
- Fraxel re:store (thermal): 3-5 treatments
- DOT (ablative and thermal): 2-4 treatments (Madonna Lift for Eyes: 3 treatments)
In addition to reducing downtime post treatment, Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) can be added to ablative treatments to enhance results. Platelets are well known to release numerous growth factors that respond to tissue injury and promote collagen production.
When will I see results?
Collagen building takes time, typically 60-90 days. Therefore, results will develop gradually in the months following the initial series of treatments. Maintenance treatments are required to maintain the results.
Who cannot have the treatment?
Fractionated Laser Resurfacing and Micro-Needling is safe for all skin types and colors. Patients with darker skin types should limit their treatments to MicroPen or Pixel RF. In addition, they may be required to pretreat the area with a topical lightening cream for one month prior to treatment. Patients who have taken isotretinoin (Accutane) within the previous 12 months or are currently pregnant cannot have the treatment. Patients with a pacemaker/defibrillator or large metal implant in the treatment area cannot have treatments with Pixel RF. Patients who have a history of radiation treatments, collage/vascular diseases or autoimmune disease may not respond as well. In addition, smoking, excessive alcohol and excessive sun exposure limit results.