Laser skin resurfacing, also known as a laser peel, laser vaporization, and las-abrasion, can reduce facial wrinkles, scars, and blemishes. While lasers used for skin treatment are nothing new, technology keeps changing, and improving, to make the procedure less invasive.
At the Aesthetics of Plastic Surgery, Dr. Crais uses the Smartskin CO2 Laser. In the procedure, the Smartskin Laser directs short, concentrated pulses of light beams at the desired area of treatment, removing the skin layer by layer. The difference in the Smartskin Laser is that it creates a pattern of microscopic columns of ablation surrounded by areas of healthy skin. These targeted ablation zones, which are basically holes created by the laser, reach deeply into the skin layers treating the aging collagen and elastin. As these microscopic holes heal, the body sends new collagen and elastin in to support the new skin, reducing the appearance of surface issues such as wrinkles and blemishes. Because the pulses are so short, there is minimal heat damage to surrounding tissue, which was a problem in early generation lasers.
With the Smartskin Laser, Dr. Crais can make many different adjustments based on both what the patient needs done and on the possible downtime. The depth of the laser penetration can be adjusted, with deeper penetrations causing deeper wounding. This would be used on deeper wrinkles. The pattern of ablation can also be adjusted, from widely space to narrowly spaced patterns of holes.
How aggressive the treatment decided upon by you and Dr. Crais will determine your recovery. You will likely feel as if you have a sunburn and your skin will lightly peel about two days after treatment. If you opted for a more aggressive treatment, your recovery could be more involved, but Dr. Crais will discuss all of that with you.