The advent of laser technologies has revolutionized the field of scar treatments in Los Angeles, California, offering precise and effective solutions for various types of scars and scarring.

There are a variety of lasers now available on the market, whose functionalities are useful for targeting different aspects of unsightly scars in order to minimize their appearance.

What can lasers do for my scars?

There are two main dimensions to scars that make them stand out against surrounding healthy skin: profile and pigment. Scars that are atrophic (depressed), or hypertrophic (raised) will stand out, because the uneven profile casts shadows across the face under typical lighting conditions.

Scars that are hyperpigmented (darker than surrounding skin) or hypopigmented (lighter than surrounding skin) are also emphasized in appearance due to these contrasting colors.

Before selecting a laser treatment, we must consider what aspects of the scar are most apparent, both upon objective assessment and from the patient’s subjective point of view.

CO2 Laser

The CO2 laser is a powerful tool for deep penetration and resurfacing in more pronounced scars. Operating on the principle of fractional photothermolysis, CO2 lasers emit high-energy light beams that are absorbed by water in the skin cells, which results in rapid heating and vaporization of local tissue.

This stimulates the body’s natural healing processes, promoting the production of new collagen and elastin in the scarred areas.

This laser can be used on both hypertrophic and atrophic scars to even out differences in elevation. However, the high power output of CO2 lasers may not be suitable for patients of color or those with a history of keloid formation, because of the significant risk of post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH) and keloid exacerbation.

Er:YAG Laser

The Erbium:YAG laser is renowned for its precision and minimal thermal damage, making it particularly effective for treating superficial scars.

This laser is especially beneficial for mild to moderate scars, such as those from acne, as it smoothens the skin’s surface while reducing the risk of adverse effects like prolonged redness or swelling.

The Erbium:YAG laser’s precise targeting makes it a preferred choice for patients with varying skin tones, including those at risk of PIH, as it allows for controlled ablation without significant heat generation that can trigger pigmentation changes.

Furthermore, its ability to finely tune the depth and intensity of treatment renders it suitable for patients who might be prone to keloid formation or have sensitive skin.

However, it is essential to note that while the Erbium:YAG laser is less aggressive than the CO2 laser, multiple treatment sessions may be required to achieve desired results, particularly for deeper or more pronounced scars.

Nd:YAG Laser

The Nd:YAG laser can achieve improvements in both scar texture and pigmentation. It is notable for its deep skin penetration, making it effective for treating sensitive scar types like hypertrophic scars and keloids.

It emits a wavelength that reaches deeper skin layers to promote collagen remodeling underneath your scars. Its versatility allows for adjustable settings to cater to various scar depths and skin types.

However, care must be taken with darker skin tones due to potential risks of pigmentation changes. The Nd:YAG laser is often used in a series of treatments for cumulative scar improvement.

The wavelength emitted by the Nd:YAG laser is also able to target the tiny blood vessels within scar tissue and surrounding skin, which are often associated with fresh or keloidal scars. This enables it to treat redness effectively, by eliminating it at its source.

Q-Switched Laser

The Q-Switched laser specializes in targeting scar pigmentation without causing significant damage to the surrounding skin. It emits high-energy light in short pulses, which effectively breaks down pigment particles within the scar tissue.

This laser is ideal for scars with hyperpigmentation or hypopigmentation, and ameliorates scars’ appearances by helping to normalize the skin tone. The precision of Q-Switched lasers minimizes the risk of PIH, making it suitable for all skin types.

However, it may require multiple sessions, depending on the extent of pigmentation and scar type.


SHI Scar Phase Out System for Acne and Non Acne Scars

SHI Scar Phase Out System

Combining Lasers for Comprehensive Treatment

In many cases, a combination of these laser technologies is employed to achieve the best results. For instance, a CO2 laser may be used to smooth the scar’s surface, followed by a Q-Switched laser to address any residual pigmentation issues.

Remember, while laser treatments can significantly improve the appearance of scars, they also pose significant risks of adverse complications. Lasers require specific expertise for best results with minimal potential side effects. We strongly advise patients to seek treatment from certified and experienced professionals at Scar Healing Institute who are experienced with your specific skin type.

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Scar Healing Institute

Scar Healing Institute is committed to developing the most effective treatments for scarring. Our team of scar revision specialists are continually inventing the latest technologies and formulas to deliver the best results for our patients.