Acne scars can be difficult to deal with, but they don’t have to last a lifetime.
“To determine the best form of treatment, we need to evaluate what type of scarring you have,” says Edward Prodanovic, MD, Assistant Professor of EVMS Dermatology. According to Dr. Prodanovic, some scars are raised, where too much scar tissue formed in its place, while other scars can show up in depressions or indentations in the skin. Additionally, many experience skin discolorations that can present as brown, red, or white spots.
“There are different modalities that can be used to help improve the texture of the scars and clinically improve their appearance,” says Dr. Prodanovic. “Among the most popular are fractional laser treatments, intense pulse light phototherapy and microneedling.”
Fractional laser treatments: This method uses intense micro-pulses of light and heat to invigorate skin and stimulate new collagen production. It leaves areas of untreated skin intact while treating only a fraction of the skin’s surface, resulting in less down time.
Intense Pulse Light Therapy: This therapy uses intense, visible, broad-spectrum pulses of light that is converted to heat energy to target specific components in the skin. These targets are heated to destruction and reabsorbed by the body. This stimulates new skin cell formation.
Microneedling: This procedure uses a pen-like tool with small fine needles to prick the skin to stimulate new collagen production. The needles can be tailored to target different depths of the skin.
Dr. Prodanovic says dermal fillers and even minor surgery have also been shown to significantly improve the appearance of acne scars. “The depth of the scar and steepness of the edges often determine how effective the treatment will be.”
The percent improvement and the number of treatments needed will vary person to person and there can be some down time that should be expected.
Learn more about the scars and spots on your skin by visiting the EVMS Aesthetic Center, the only cosmetic program in Hampton Roads that includes physician expertise from three specialties, Plastic Surgery, Facial Plastic Surgery and Dermatology.
Call 757.689.8258 to make an appointment.