Laser Treatment for Surgical Scars

Life is one bumpy ride –  we rise, and we fall, and we have the scars to prove it. Scars can take us to happy moments in our lives, but there are some occasions we would like to make the marks disappear and just keep the good memories.

Can You Use Laser Surgery to Get Rid of Scars?

There is an effective option to achieve this: laser treatments –  a great non-invasive cosmetic procedure that reduces scars and, in some cases eliminates them entirely.

How Does Laser Scar Removal Work?

Laser treatments are powerful waves that penetrate the skin middle, and sometimes deep layers. What exactly does that mean? Well, it means that a powerful, yet gentle, laser will remove the damaged skin cells and promote the production of collagen, resulting in your skin looking firmer, tighter and with a more even tone. Now, not all lasers work the same, and that’s a good thing! Laser technology has advanced considerably, so depending on the type of scarring you have, is the type of laser treatment you will need.

Laser Resurfacing:

As the name suggests, this laser scar removal technology removes the scarred layers and makes a new skin layer resurface. After the required treatments, you will get a tighter and smoother skin. Our in-house expert, Dr. Alberto de la Fuente, a recognized dermatologist who specializes in laser treatment for surgical scars, works with two lasers technologies of this kind:

o   Erbium: YAG laser: a powerful laser that is perfect for small or shallow lesions. In addition to being an excellent scar fading treatment, it is also useful for rejuvenation and wrinkle fading. Thanks to its wavelength, the Erbium laser matches the peak of water absorption, so the energy of the laser is focalized for an almost instant ablation of the tissue. In simpler words, all the power of the laser goes exactly to where it is needed, helping your skin heal faster and better.

o   CO2 Laser Skin Resurfacing: CO2 Laser should be your go-to option for deeper scars or lesions. A potent laser that delivers brief pulses of high-energy light to the deeper skin layers. As the light penetrates the skin, it turns into heat. The heat mildly damages the skin cells, forcing them to repair themselves. As the natural process of healing advances, the body begins to generate collagen, a protein that is essential for healthy, elastic skin. After your treatment, your skin will look fresher, smoother and more even in tone and texture.

Non-Ablative Laser Resurfacing:  

This technology works by using infrared lasers to heat up the targeted portion of the skin, without destroying the cells. What makes this process so effective is that the heat goes directly to the deeper layers of the skin, making the tissue heal by itself. The process also stimulates the natural body production of the collagen and new skin cells. These new cells will replace the scars’ damaged cells. We have two non-ablative lasers at your disposal:

o    IPL: Intense pulsed light, also known as “photofacial”, is a great non-invasive treatment for acne scars. IPL is also useful to reduce hyperpigmentation and dark spots in the skin. IPL works by emitting short pulse of intense light into the tissue. Sessions are short, only around 15-30 minutes, so you can have this treatment even at your busiest week!

o  Restore: a short-term and long-term investment. This powerful laser therapy brings a variety of skin-rejuvenating benefits. eliminates the old skin cells by penetrating the inner skins’ layers and stimulating thousands of microscopic areas. When you leave the session, your skin will feel smoother and will look brighter, and as time progresses, deeper layers of the skin will heal, and new cells will regenerate.

A question many patients have when considering laser surgery to get rid of scars are the scar removal side effects. Normally, laser treatments are a pretty much problem-free procedure but it’s totally normal to have doubts. Here are some of the most common ones:

Laser Scar Removal Concerns

Does laser treatment hurt?

 Not really, laser beams attack the tissue in a deep cellular level and some of them, even include a local analgesic like a cooling spray. Most of the times, you will feel like being outside in the sun for a little too long time, however certain treatments can be a bit painful. Don’t worry, if necessary, our medical staff will administer a local anesthesia to lessen or eliminate the pain.

How long is the downtime? 

 Depending on the procedure you take, recovery can range from practically nothing to taking two or three days free. Your skin will be red, irritated and swollen so it’s a good idea to relax, apply a cold pack to reduce swelling and take over-the-counter pain medication if needed.

Will I need to have extra precautions?

Two weeks before your procedure, you should stop smoking. Don’t take aspirins or medications that can slow the healing process, and don’t use skin products containing retinol or glycolic acid two to four weeks before your procedure. Additionally, before and after your procedure, you should protect your skin with sunblock.

To schedule an appointment with our board certified dermatologist and learn more about how laser treatments can help you eliminate scars, please contact VIDA Wellness and Beauty by calling 1-619-738-2144 (toll-free) now.

Dr. Alejandro Quiroz

Dr. Quiroz is our board-certified Chief Plastic Surgeon at VIDA Clinic in Tijuana. He specializes in Facial Rejuvenation, Neck lift, Buttock Augmentation, Breast Augmentation, Body Contouring and more. He is member of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, American Society of Plastic Surgeons, International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, San Diego Plastic Surgery Society, the Mexican Society of Aesthetic & Reconstructive Plastic Surgery and the Mexican Council of Aesthetic & Reconstructive Plastic Surgery, to mention a few.