Surgical Arts of Virginia uses the new innovative Active FX/Deep FX/Full FX UltraPulse CO 2 Laser by Lumenis. It is the most powerful CO2 laser on the market. It can be used in fully ablative mode or in fractional mode. It is the best laser available to treat fine lines, deep wrinkles and scars on the face and body. It also tones and tightens the skin and fix uneven pigmentation.
What is CO 2 Laser Resurfacing?
The carbon dioxide (CO2) laser uses light energy to target water in the skin to ablate, or remove, the superficial layer of the skin. There is also the introduction of heat into the dermis of the skin which induces a healing response resulting in the production of new collagen.
Benefits of Co2 Laser Treatments
- Single treatment
- Long lasting results
- Dramatic aesthetic improvement
- Can be tailored to meet downtime allowances
- Customizable to each patient with unmatched versatility in range of treatments
CO 2 Laser is customizable into three levels of treatment:
ActiveFX – is a Superficial ablation used to treat fine lines, uneven texture, uneven pigmentation (dyschromia) and loss of skin tone.
DeepFX – is a Deep ablation for treatment of deep wrinkles and scars.
TotalFX – is a Combined superficial and deep ablation to accomplish all of the above.
Is CO2 Laser Resurfacing Right For Me?
If you notice loss of skin tone, uneven pigmentation, deep wrinkles (especially around the mouth and eyes), fine lines, or scarring then CO2 laser is an excellent modality to consider. It is most commonly used on the face, neck, and decollete, but can also be used on other areas.
How is Laser Skin Resurfacing Performed?
We use IV sedation and topical anesthetic when utilizing the CO2 laser for resurfacing.
The laser treatment itself is tailored to the patients desired level of treatment. The greater the energies used for treatment the more dramatic the result and consequently the greater the down time. We will determine this in the initial consultation.
The procedure itself takes about an hour. After the procedure we apply platelet rich plasma (PRP) and use microneedling to help work the PRP into the skin. PRP has been shown to increase the rate of healing and enhance the overall result. Aquaphor is then applied to help maintain moisture.
CO2 Laser Resurfacing Recovery
In the days following CO2 laser therapy, the treated area is kept moist with frequent applications of Aquaphor. There will be significant redness and tenderness that will last from 3-5 days. The area will then peel. The skin will remain pink for about a month, but can be masked with make-up once peeling has concluded, typically within 7 days. Pain medication is provided, but usually is only necessary for 1-2 days. It is essential that strict sun protection is used until healing is complete because the skin’s normal defenses are compromised until then. Afterwards, a daily sunscreen should be a part of your daily regimen.
Schedule Your CO2 Resurfacing Consultation
What is TotalFX “fractional” laser resurfacing?
TotalFX is a fractional CO 2 laser procedure that combines both the ActiveFX and DeepFX treatment.
During the procedure, a high-energy beam of laser light is used to smooth out fine lines, wrinkles and scars, remove brown spots and other skin irregularities. It also stimulates formation of new underlying collagen to continue improvement over time.
What is the difference between ActiveFx, DeepFx and Total FX?
ActiveFX is CO 2 laser skin resurfacing for the active person. It is a fractional laser treatment, meaning only a fraction of the skin’s surface is treated by the laser, leaving small areas of skin “untouched” allowing for a faster healing process and enables you to get back to normal activities sooner. The treatment causes the upper layer of skin to peel off and regenerate a layer of new, healthy skin.
DeepFX is CO 2 laser skin resurfacing for deeper wrinkles and scars that have a dermal component. This treatment also uses a fractional pattern to aid in the regeneration process. The deep heating associated with DeepFX causes immediate collagen tightening and long-term collagen remodeling. The patient can expect softening and smoothing of wrinkles and scars, with improved skin texture. The Deep FX treatment is fantastic for wrinkles around the mouth and eyes.
Total FX combines the Active FX and Deep FX systems. The results are fractional resurfacing of the surface of your skin, removing sun damage and brown spots, as well as the deeper skin, removing wrinkles, scars, and uneven skin tone. Total FX is a complete resurfacing treatment capable of astounding results.
Is ActiveFX, DeepFX or TotalFX right for me?
Patients can opt for only an ActiveFX treatment, depending on the areas of concern. However, Surgical Arts of Virginia recommends using the Active FX and Deep FX treatments together for most patients, as they provide optimal results.
How long do the results of TotalFX last?
Total FX is a long term treatment with results that can last for years.
What are the benefits of a TotalFX treatment?
- Immediate collagen tightening
- Reduces wrinkles and fine lines
- Softens deep lines
- Noticeably improves skin tone and texture
- Gets rid of and reduces age spots and sun damage
- Stimulates new collagen formation and plumps the skin
The results of a TotalFX laser treatment are long-term and, with proper sun protection, can persist for many years. Most effects of treatment become visible right away, whereas others – such as new collagen formation – build up gradually and become more evident over time. Therefore, most people look even better 3-6 months after the procedure.
How is TotalFX performed?
The treatment itself lasts approximately 20 minutes. You should plan on an hour for the entire visit in order for us to apply anesthetic cream prior to the treatment, to help minimize discomfort.
During the treatment, you will feel a warm sensation over the area being treated.
Total FX Recovery
Recovering from the procedure is much like any laser treatment. The skin may feel slightly sunburned and swollen and require a bit of cooling. This can be controlled with ice packs and medications prescribed.
There may be a red, crusted appearance for eight or more days with the deeper CO 2 laser or just four days with the ActiveFX laser. The skin will likely appear as a sunburn and this will subside over a few days or weeks as the skin heals and begins to peel.
Keeping the skin moisturized is always a good idea as is avoiding prolonged exposure to the sun. It is possible to get back to work and an everyday routine after the procedure as long as the skin is taken care of.
Downtime can be described in terms of Absolute Downtime (most people would stay indoors), Relative Downtime (you feel fine, but look not so good), Social Downtime (you can return to work and actually look fine, but people will notice recent treatment). Active FX downtime=1 day Absolute Downtime, 2-4 days Relative Downtime, 5-7 days Social Downtime. For Deep or Total FX downtime expect longer down times.
Results are often visible right away, especially with Deep and Total FX, and progressively get more noticeable as time goes by. The skin will peel and heal over and new collagen is formed, thus filling fine lines, removing discolorations on the face, and tightening loose skin. Most people experience progressive improvement up to six months. Results can last years if good care is taken of the treated area.