Laser Resurfacing (Thousand Oaks)
Laser resurfacing is a procedure used to resurface the skin of the face, neck, chest and hands. It can also be used to rejuvenate other parts of the body. Laser resurfacing can treat mild to moderate sun damage, very fine wrinkles, and other minor skin blemishes. It will not eliminate deep wrinkles or sagging skin, however can be used to tighten the skin of the lower eyelids. Laser resurfacing is typically not a substitute for more invasive procedures such as a facelift but work best as an adjunct to other facial rejuvenation procedures.
Who is a good candidate?
The ideal candidates are women and men with fair complexions seeking improvement in fine wrinkles, sun blotches, and other minor skin irregularities.
Who is not a good candidate?
People with very dark or black skin are not good candidates due to a high risk of permanent pigment abnormalities. Anyone who has taken isotretinoin (Accutane) must wait a minimum of 12 months before having laser resurfacing due to the severe risk of scarring. Patients who have a history of cold sores (oral herpes simplex infection) must take prophylactic anti-herpes medication (such as acyclovir) before undergoing laser resurfacing.
How does laser resurfacing work?
Laser resurfacing works by creating a controlled “burn” of the outer layers of the dermis (skin). The remaining deeper dermis then regenerates, creating a smoother, younger looking appearance to the skin.
Which types of laser resurfacing do you offer at the Kryger Institute?
There are many different lasers used in plastic surgery. They range from complete ablative lasers such as CO2 or Erbium to fractionated lasers that only ablate a fraction of the skin. We currently offer Erbium resurfacing which is a weaker (less effective and lower risk) laser than CO2 lasers.
Is laser resurfacing performed in the office?
The resurfacing can be performed in the clinic or in the operating room (if you are undergoing another procedure). Some procedures, however, cannot be performed at the same time as laser resurfacing. During your office consultation, your surgeon will discuss with you the best place to perform your procedure.
How painful is laser resurfacing?
There is only a small amount of burning associated with laser resurfacing. A topical numbing medicine can be used before the procedure, however injection of anesthesia (nerve blocks) are also an option.
Will I look like a different person?
Absolutely not. The idea is to make you look younger with healthier more youthful skin, and not to make you look like a different person.
How long does it take to work and how long does it last?
A laser resurfacing begins to work immediately. It takes about two weeks, however, for the outer layers of skin to completely “peel” off and for the redness to go away. As long as you stay out of the sun and wear lots of sunscreen, use a good skin moisturizer, and avoid smoking, the results of the laser resurfacing can last for many months to years.
What do I have to do after the laser resurfacing treatment?
You should keep your face as clean and moisturized as possible. Water and vinegar soaks are recommended several times a day for the first few days, along with an ointment, such as Aquaphor to protect the healing skin. Harsh scrubbing or exfoliating cleansers are not advisable. Afterwards, you should apply a zinc-based SPF 35 or higher every morning. Your provider will tell you when to begin this routine, and which soap and moisturizer to use. Also, you should avoid direct sun exposure to the face for at least two weeks following the laser resurfacing treatment.
What if I have a problem? When should I call the office?
The Kryger Institute welcomes calls from patients. If you have any concerns at any time, please feel free to call our office. If it is an emergency, the answering service is available 24 hours a day, including weekends and holidays. There is always a plastic surgeon on call. Your surgeon will discuss all the risks and potential complications with you before surgery. You will receive detailed instructions about situations that warrant a call to the office.