CO2 Laser Skin Resurfacing

What is CO2 Laser Skin Resurfacing?

Laser skin resurfacing is a surgical process that removes layers of damaged skin, typically in the face, to reveal healthy layers of skin underneath. Laser skin treatments involve focused light energy beams that repair and rejuvenate damaged skin. Resurfacing treatments with lasers are safe and effective and much less invasive than chemical peels or dermabrasion.

The carbon dioxide (CO2) laser is a surgical procedure that remains the best option for resurfacing severely sun-damaged skin. CO2 is considered an ablative laser which allows for more severe results and takes fewer sessions to complete. Conversely, ablative laser treatments do require a longer recovery time since it removes the damaged layer of skin to reveal the healthy skin underneath. The healing process creates thick, smooth, youthful skin. This technology is often used in concert with other surgical procedures.

In the video above, Dr. Flaharty discusses the Laser C02 procedure. What is talked about is specifically what it’s used for, why it’s used, and how it’s performed. He also talks about the benefits of the procedure, as well as the ideal candidates, recovery & what results you should expect.

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What Concerns Can Laser Skin Resurfacing Resolve?

Laser resurfacing can be performed for any of the following reasons:

  • Decrease or eliminate wrinkles or stretch marks
  • Decrease the size of enlarged pores
  • Diminish the appearance of scars
  • Improve skin tone due to melasma or other causes
  • Rejuvenate non-responsive skin after a facelift
  • Remove age spots or spider veins
  • Remove tattoos
  • Remove warts or birthmarks
  • Repair sun-damaged skin

Laser Skin Resurfacing Procedure

The laser resurfacing procedure is performed with topical anesthesia and takes between 30 and 90 minutes. This varies based on the treatment area size and location. Many patients, typically with ablative procedures such as CO2 laser resurfacing, will notice and be satisfied with the results after one procedure. Depending on the goals and skin condition of the patient additional sessions or touch-ups can be done.

In the video above, Dr. Flaharty shows specific before & after images. He then answers some questions and discusses the procedure in further detail.

What is the Recovery from CO2 Laser Resurfacing?

After CO2 laser resurfacing, the treatment area will temporarily be raw, swollen, and itchy. Dr. Flaharty will apply a thick ointment and a watertight dressing over the area. If a patient has had treatment on their face we recommend elevating your head during the night. Additionally, ice and pain relievers can be used to alleviate symptoms.

Patients should avoid strenuous activity and clean the area regularly. Since the skin is raw and healing patients should avoid exposure to the sun whenever possible. Visible healing can take up to two weeks to appear.

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Are there Risks to the CO2 Laser Resurfacing Procedure?

Laser skin treatment is considered safe and typically does not have any long-term complications. While risks after treatment are rare they can include:

  • Acne
  • Infection
  • Milia, tiny white bumps on the skin
  • Pigmentation changes
  • Redness
  • Scarring

FAQS About CO2 Laser Skin Resurfacing

How Long Does It Take To See Results?

Results and when you can see them can vary from person to person, as this is a very personalized treatment. Results can take longer to show if the procedure you needed was a much more in-depth and below-surface level treatment. While a deeper treatment may require more time to heal properly, it also provides better results. Patients who undergo a shallower treatment can also expect to experience less downtime. Full results however can take up to 6 months. 

Are There Any Reasons This Treatment Isn’t Right For Me?

There are many reasons this might not be the right treatment for you. If you’re taking specific medications that can increase your photosensitivity or the use of Accutane in the last 6 months before treatment, this may not be the right treatment for you. This may also not be the right treatment for you if you have a history of deep scarring and poor healing. 

What Can CO2 Laser Treatment Not Resolve?

CO2 laser treatment is not a good treatment for those looking to reduce the appearance and redness of dilated blood vessels at the surface of the skin. It cannot help with veins, redness, or discolored patches on the neck such as poikiloderma or telangiectasias. 

How Many CO2 Laser Treatments Will I Need?

While this can vary from patient to patient, most individuals won’t need more than one treatment to see great results. However, this can largely depend on the results you desire. Those with deeper wrinkles and scarring may need a few treatment sessions to see desired results. The number of treatment sessions you need is mostly based on how well you recover and if you have any skin conditions or excess sensitivity. 

Schedule a Consultation Today!

At Azul Cosmetic Surgery & Medical Spa, our team of healthcare professionals are dedicated to providing you with the best service and care possible. With state-of-the-art technology and equipment, we strive to make sure you see nothing but the best results after every treatment session. Our mission is to help you achieve a healthier and happier you, and give you a look you can be proud of.

Ready to learn more about how laser skin resurfacing at the Fort Myers, Naples, and Bonita Springs practice of Dr. Patrick Flaharty can help you look your best? Request a consultation using our convenient online form, or call the office directly at (239)379-8926.

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