Laser scar removal uses a focused beam of light to vaporize and remove scarred layers of skin or stimulate collagen growth. It is a popular treatment that’s highly effective on the correct types of scars. Laser treatment typically can reduce the visibility of scars by up to 80%.
Which Types Scars Can Laser Scar Removal Treat?
Many different types of scars from raised (keloid) scars to atrophic (depressed) scars can be treated. Acne scars, stretch marks, and traumatic scars can all be treated by a variety of laser treatments.
What Are The Different Types Of Laser Scar Removal?
There are several types of laser treatment for scars. The types of treatment can be described as ablative vs non-ablative. Lasers that stimulate growth of collagen in only second layer of the skin without destroying the top layer are described as non-ablative and require less recovery time than ablative lasers. Those that destroy both the top layer and second layer are described as ablative. The differences between the two types of laser treatments can be found in more detail here.
Ablative Laser Resurfacing
Laser resurfacing is the term given to ablative treatment. A high powered laser is used to “burn away” the top layer of skin, while simultaneously smoothing skin below. It can be performed in a dermatologist’s office as an outpatient and only a local anesthetic is required. The doctor may also give you a sedative prior to this laser treatment.
Unlike ablative laser resurfacing, non-ablative laser treatment uses a lower energy beam of light to heat only the skin beneath the surface. This causes increased production of collagen. Non-ablative resurfacing is not as effective as ablative laser resurfacing, requires a higher number of treatments, tends to be less expensive, and has a shorter overall downtime.
Fractionated Laser Resurfacing
Fractional laser resurfacing (ablative and non-ablative) is the newest and best way of laser scar revision. Instead of removing the entire top layer of skin, fractionated resurfacing treatments create tiny thermal holes in the skin cells. These allow the body to break down old and scarred skin while allowing the surrounding healthy skin to promote quicker and more even healing highly reducing the risk of side effects. It has become the norm of laser resurfacing.
This laser is is a vascular laser that is used to remove the redness, purple color, or pink that may be present in hypertrophic scars, keloids, stretch marks, or other atrophic or healing scars.