Laser Treatment of Acne and Acne Scars
Acne vulgaris is a common inflammatory skin condition that typically occurs during puberty and resolves by the 20s. While mild cases may not require medical attention, acne can cause pain and affect relationships due to its abundance, recurrence, and scarring. Laser and light therapy treatments can effectively address existing acne and improve the appearance of acne scars, promoting smoother skin texture with reduced acne formation.
Click here for more information about various treatments for acne and acne scars.
Laser Treatments for Acne
1. Laser Drainage
The basic surgical treatment of suppurative diseases is drainage. The same is true for acne. The ultra-pulsed carbon dioxide laser is used to puncture a hole thinner than a needle to drain the comedo and pus from the inside of the pimple. Unlike the traditional method of puncturing and draining pus with needle aspiration, the laser can simultaneously sterilize cavity. This is the basic treatment for acutely inflamed red pimples.
Laser used: Ultra-pulsed carbon dioxide laser
2. Forced resetting of inflammation
Regardless of whether acne is acute or chronic, inflammation is accompanied by redness in view of neovascularization. Laser helps to reduce the redness and inflammation by breaking up the neovascularization. Pulse dyed laser targets the oxyhemoglobin in the blood vessels specifically, making it extremely effective.
Laser used: Dye laser
3. Removal of comedones
In cases of non-inflammatory closed comedones, procedures are often required to remove them as they tend to persist for a long period of time. Ultra pulsed carbon dioxide laser can remove comedones and prevent recurrence of acne.
Laser used: Ultra Pulsed Carbon Dioxide Laser
4. Treatment Summary
Number of treatments: 1 time or more
Treatment period: 1 month or longer
Interval between treatments: If you get acne
Possible risks/side effects: Pigmentation, redness, etc.
Schedule a consultation today and start your acne recovery journey today.
Treatments of Acne Scars
There are two main types of acne scars:
Residual redness that remains after the pimple has healed, and the scar that forms as result of loss of collagen.
1. The pimple has healed but the redness persists
For individuals experiencing persistent redness of acne even after the pimple has healed, the natural fading process may be hindered by the presence of multiple acne lesions and ongoing inflammation. Treating this condition typically involves using a dye laser, which is also employed for laser treatment of active acne. At our clinic, we focus on addressing the overall redness of the affected areas, whether it is associated with acne scars or new pimples. While new acne lesions generally show improvement with a single treatment, multiple sessions are often required to effectively reduce the redness associated with acne scars.
2. An indented scar caused by an infected pimple
Indented scars resulting from previous infected pimples, commonly referred to as depressed scars, pose a particular challenge for laser and other treatment modalities. At our clinic, we have achieved excellent results in treating depressed scars using a combination of carbon dioxide and dye lasers (refer to the section on depressed scars for more information). It's important to note that the response to treatment may vary among different acne scars, and the number of required treatments depends on factors such as the area affected, individual characteristics, and the course of the acne. Therefore, it is necessary to consider that multiple treatment sessions will likely be needed to achieve desired outcomes.
Non-laser Treatments for Acne
Acne is a chronic disease that is plagued by recurrence. The ultimate goal is to prevent its recurrence, improves skin barrier and skin resilience as well as prevention of scarring.
1. LED Therapy
LED treatment for acne not only prevents acne-causing keratin plugs (dead skin plugs that clog pores) by raising skin metabolism, but also acts as an antimicrobial against acne bacteria. In the case of LED treatment of acne, blue LEDs are used, and the porphyrins produced by acne bacteria absorb this blue light and produce a bactericidal effect. The LED treatment is painless, has almost no side effects, and can be performed safely.
2. Peeling Treatment
Regular thinning of the stratum corneum on the skin surface prevents the appearance of microcomedo (keratin plugs) and prevents acne. In conditions with more comedones, salicylic acid macrogol peeling is recommended.
3. Other treatments
Other treatments are used in combination with topical and oral medications to effectively treat acne.
Laser therapy is one of the most efficient treatments for improving acne. However, there are many different types of laser therapy, so it is crucial to choose the one that best suits your skin. Consult with a specialist to find the best treatment for you today!
This blog post was medically reviewed by Dr Summer Zhang.