Life Changing Fractional CO2 Scar Revision
Laser skin treatments goes beyond rejuvenation, photoaging and wrinkles. Lasers can play an important role in scar revision. Scars can form anywhere on the body as a result of trauma, burns, surgery, cystic acne or some genetic predisposition such as spontaneous keloid formation.
Until the development of Fractional CO2, we were limited to pulse dye lasers to treat vascular and/or pigmented lesions or a variety of non-ablative lasers. These lasers help to improve the appearance of scars and are still today used in combination with fractional CO2 lasers. Different lasers and wavelengths cause different wound-healing responses. Non-ablative lasers provide lasers focus on heating the skin to trick body to sense that it has been injured stimulating a healing response, while ablative lasers actually removes some of the tissue causing a wound and allows the body to heal and form normal tissue. Fractional CO2 lasers are considered ablative as compared non-ablative lasers.
Adding the fractional CO2 laser to scar reduction has significantly enhanced the degree of improvement with fewer treatments as mentioned by Geronemus RG in Laser Surgery Medicine Journal 2008.
The fractional CO2 laser can penetrate thickened, non-flexible scar tissue, remove it and allow new tissue to form. Treatment has improved range of motion especially in burn scars. Therefore, scar revision in burn survivors not only improves the appearance of scars but improves functionality. Usually each treatment improves the scar. All skin types can be treated as long as appropriate parameters are used for the different skin types. Old and new scars can be treated.
Dr. Jill Waibel, who recently presented webinar sponsored by Lutronics, spoke on the Lutronics fractional eCO2 laser March 2015 and tissue repair on all types of scars is creating more awareness of reducing physically and emotionally disabling scars. She feels that there are many more scars that can be treated, and patients are not aware of the possibilities unless resources are brought to their attention. Due to modern medicine, many more are surviving burns and other traumatic injuries so there are many more scars to be treated.
Dr. Waibel feels early intervention is crucial. In the past we have been programmed to wait until the scar is more mature, but with early intervention, fractional laser co2 can actually prevent the more fibrous tissue formation. This concept can apply to most types of scars.
With increased awareness of the life changing benefits of scar remodeling with fractional CO2 laser resurfacing, more patients can be helped to lead more normal lives, improving physical function in every day home life or the work environment as well as improve their emotional well-being.