Fractional Skin Resurfacing
By Southeastern Medicine Solutions
...the difference is amazing!
Skin resurfacing reduces fine lines, deep wrinkles while smoothing skin texture and correcting pigment irregularities. The treatment leads to long term collagen stimulation and regeneration for lasting results.
Most people realize that sunlight contains ultraviolet rays of light that can be harmful to the skin. We know that if we spend too much time in the sun, or even one session in a tanning bed, we are at risk for skin cancer. What we also need to recognize is that UV light is also one of the primary causes of premature aging. Tanning, or just being outdoors often, eventually leads to brown spots on the hands, arms, chest, face, and other areas. It leads to discoloration, rough texture, enlarged pores, and loss of elasticity and firmness in the skin. In recent years, skin resurfacing has become a popular method of correcting the cosmetic effects of aging and photodamage.
What is fractional skin resurfacing?
Fractional skin resurfacing is a way of treating only a fraction of the skin in a single session. This reduces thermal injury without degrading the outcome of the process. Unlike laser resurfacing, which ablates the uppermost layers of the skin, radiofrequency fractional skin resurfacing works by sending powerful energy beneath the surface, where collagen and elastin production takes place.
Fractional skin resurfacing is performed to correct several cosmetic and dermatologic concerns. These include acne scars and other types of scars, enlarged pores, lines and wrinkles, stretch marks, uneven skin texture and tone, dyschromia, and rosacea.
Who is a candidate for laser skin resurfacing?
Because our skin resurfacing treatment involves radiofrequency, it is suitable for nearly all skin types. Ideal candidates are interested in improving their skin’s appearance and understand what can be achieved with resurfacing. Our staff discusses how many treatments may be needed to achieve each patient’s desired outcome. It is important to inform your provider if you are pregnant or nursing, have diabetes, are immunocompromised, have a history of skin disorders, or have an internal pacemaker or another type of electrical implant. Resurfacing should not be performed over tattoos or on excessively tanned skin.
What to Expect During My First Treatment
Before your resurfacing treatment, your provider may apply a topical numbing cream to the treatment area. This does not completely numb all sensations but minimizes the nerve response to the tiny microneedles and deposit of radiofrequency energy. If a numbing cream is applied, it takes approximately 30 minutes to work. After that time, your skin will be cleaned and the small handpiece will be used to stamp the skin in a uniform manner. The process can take 15 to 30 minutes depending on the area being treated.
How often can I get fractional skin resurfacing treatments?
We schedule Fractional RF treatments about every 4 weeks. This keeps the stimulation to fibroblast cells consistent, promoting the ongoing production of collagen for better results over time. Patients typically schedule 3 to 4 treatment sessions to see meaningful, lasting results.
When will I see results from Fractional RF Treatments?
After the first session, the body begins producing more collagen and elastin. It takes time, however, to see the effects of this process. Usually, improvements begin to appear after the second treatment session. They continue to improve as treatments are repeated and new collagen rebuilds the skin’s foundation.
Recovery from Fractional Skin Resurfacing
The skin will be warm and red after fractional skin resurfacing, similar to a sunburn. If warmth feels intense, it can be reduced with cool air, like fanning the skin. This sensation typically resolves in 24 hours. During this time, you should only use products approved or prescribed by your provider. After 24 hours, normal skincare may resume. Sunscreen with SPF 30 should be worn daily. Makeup can be applied at this time, as well. All tanning should be avoided for at least 2 days after RF skin resurfacing. Your provider may advise you to avoid all tanning throughout the course of your treatment sessions. Hot baths, massages, and rigorous exercise can resume after 48 hours.
Is laser skin resurfacing painful?
The use of topical numbing cream may be requested if you are concerned about discomfort. The microneedles used to deposit RF energy are about the size of a single strand of hair. The RF energy is delivered in quick pulses that may feel like a zap that lasts only a moment. Because radiofrequency waves transform to heat in the dermis, the treatment area will begin to feel warm like a sunburn. Patients describe this treatment as very tolerable.
Risks of Laser Skin Resurfacing
The Venus VersaTM system is used for the majority of our resurfacing treatments. This is not the same as laser skin resurfacing. RF energy permeates the surface of the skin, it does not vaporize it in the way that laser energy does. Therefore, radiofrequency skin resurfacing is generally considered very safe and effective for most skin tones, even on the darker side.
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