Which layers of the skin are treated with Laser Resurfacing?
No matter the modality utilized for facial resurfacing, a thorough understanding of skin anatomy is the difference between a fabulous result and a very poor outcome. The skin is a complex organ composed of three major layers—the epidermis (top), dermis (middle), and subcutaneous tissue (bottom). A limited depth of injury to the dermal layer, which contains hair follicles, sweat glands, and collagen, is crucial to prevent scarring and unsatisfactory results.
Can Laser Resurfacing be performed on all skin types?
Skin type is determined by the amount of melanin (pigment) in the skin and the effects of tanning. Generally, lighter skin prone to sunburn has a lower amount of melanin production, while darker skin types with a tendency to tan contain larger amounts of melanin. The Fitzpatrick classification is a scale used to grade an individual’s skin type and categorize one’s candidacy for laser treatment. Those with significant pigment to the skin (higher Fitzpatrick level) often have limitations to laser resurfacing procedures due to the risk of permanent discoloration and scarring.
Can I have Laser Resurfacing performed if I am on Accutane (Isotrenoin)?
A major contraindication to this procedure is the active use of Accutane (Isotrenoin), a powerful Vitamin A derivative that treats severe, nodular acne by reducing the amount of oil released from sebaceous glands of the skin. Essentially, less oil production means less pore clogging and less acne. While reduced oil production decreases the formation of acne, actively secreting sebaceous glands are required to prevent scarring and delayed wound healing after resurfacing procedures. Dr. Givens requires all candidates to be off of Accutane for at least 6 months prior to laser skin resurfacing in Austin.