Go to Top

Acne scar Treatments



Fortunately, needing to cover up these unsightly scars as a long term solution is a thing of the past. If you have acne scars or chicken pox scars there are many aesthetic treatments available to improve their appearance. Surgery is not the only option and sometimes it is not even recommended for mild (shallow) cases of acne scars.

 

Click on the each topic in this webpage:

How can I tell if I need surgery?
What is the basic principle beyond acne scar attenuation?
Laser resurfacing.
Voltaic arcing or plasma resurfacing.
Micro needling.
Microdermal abrasion.
Skin resurfacing using cosmetic peels.
Dermal fillers.
Combination of various aesthetic treatments.

 

 

How can I tell if I need surgery?

Improving the appearance of acne scars is a mere aesthetic treatment. Surgery is recommended only if the scars are very deep.

In case of isolated deep scars ("ice pick Scar"). This is an example of when minor surgery may be recommended.

In case of isolated deep scars (“ice pick Scar”). This is an example of when minor surgery may be recommended.

In this example, various types of aesthetic treatments can help improve the overall appearance of the skin including, improving the appearance of the atrophic scars, however the best results in case of deep scars are achieved following aesthetic treatments after minor surgery.

This is because the aesthetic treatments available today are not suitable to reconstruct the missing part of the skin. Therefore a minor reconstructive procedure can bring about the best results.

 

Non commendable for minor surgical Treatment.

Non commendable for minor surgical Treatments. The aesthetic treatments currently available are usually sufficient to achieve very good improvements in this type of acne scars.

In the case above although the atrophic scar are evident they are not very deep like in the case of “Ice Pick Scar”, therefore surgery is not necessary to improve the appearance of these types of scars.

As a rule of thumb, if the scars look more like an uneven skin structure and not like many little isolated holes, then the vast array of  aesthetic treatments available will be usually very effective in improving the appearance of this type of atrophic scars.
Click here to return to the top

 

 

 

 

What is the basic principle beyond acne scar attenuation?

Any aesthetic treatment for acne scar or chickenpox scar attenuation uses the very well known basic  principle of skin resurfacing, which in turn produces skin regeneration. The basic principle is to stimulate the skin in a certain way (maybe by using lasers, voltaic plasma, micro-needling, chemical peels etc)  so that the the old skin is removed and new collagen forms generating new firmer, tighter and smother skin. As we will see, this can be done in a number of different ways, at different costs, leading to similar end results, which is the improvement in the appearance of the atrophic scars.

skin regeneration

The benefits of skin regeneration to improve the appearance of acne scars  is very well known. Fortunately, the results are repeatable and consistent. The only downside is that there are not currently known ways to remove the acne scars completely using any of the aesthetic treatments available within a single session. Generally a number of treatments are necessary in order to achieve satisfactory results.

skin regeneration1

Each treatment stimulates the skin in order to produce new collagen and get rid of the old layer of  uneven skin.  Every time this happens the appearance of the acne scars improves slightly. Therefore repeating the treatments usually leads to very good results.

Please note that in case of “ice pick scars” none of these treatments can bring about excellent results as the only way to reach acceptable results is the use of minor surgery followed by a number of  skin resurfacing treatments. After all, these aesthetic treatments are not suitable to reconstruct the missing skin of the atrophic scars.
Click here to return to the top

 

 

 

Laser resurfacing.

One of the well known ways to induce collagen regeneration by using skin resurfacing is the use of aesthetic lasers. In the video below you can see an example of aggressive treatment with a aesthetic laser. The Laser burns the skin superficially but it also penetrates into the dermal layer causing some degree of bleeding. Please note that although the treatment looks quite gruesome it is indeed effective given the degree and depth of skin regeneration stimulation.

The way lasers operate in skin resurfacing, tattoo removal, skin tightening is pretty much the same. The laser beam produce a burn which in turn will start the skin regeneration process. Please note that laser treatments produce very well known side effects including scarring hypo and hyper-pigmentation.

The depth of the treatment is regulated by the wavelength of the laser beam. The lower the frequency the deeper the effects of the laser into the skin, conversely the higher the frequency the more superficial the ablation effect on the skin.

Some lasers can use a combination of wavelengths producing multi-layer skin regeneration stimulation. This multi frequency treatments are used in those aesthetic lasers for tattoo removal which claim complete removal in very few sessions.

laser skin regeneration

The shorter the wavelength (higher frequency) the more superficial the heating on the skin. Conversely the larger the wavelength the deeper the effects on to the skin. As you can see on the right most picture the laser affect the skin up to the dermis.

Click here to return to the top

 

 

 

 

Voltaic arcing or plasma resurfacing.

Like with lasers, Voltaic plasma (or electrical arcing) is used to induce the skin regeneration necessary to improve the appearance of the Acne scars.

This technique is very effective and produces noticeable results in 3 to 5 sessions depending on the intensity of the treatment. The “down time” is similar to those of the lasers however the treatment does not normally induce bleeding as seen in some cases of laser treatment.

For more information about this treatment for acne scar attenuation CLICK HERE.
Click here to return to the top

 

 

 

 

Micro needling.

Micro needling is a very well known aesthetic treatment. The are many products available on the market. Some are marketed for medical use only and others are marketed as home based aesthetic treatments. The most known products are the dermapen and dermaroller. There are also many others available onto the market.

microneedlingThe basic principle is based on causing a mechanical injury by piercing the skin multiple times. This micro injuries will induce the skin regeneration process therefore producing new collagen.

Depending on the product used the treatment can cause minor bleeding. The downtime is minimal and can last 2 to 3 days and some scabbing may form during healing.

Usually 3 to 5 treatments may be required to achieve a good improvement in the appearance of acne scars.
Click here to return to the top

 

 

 

 

Microdermal abrasion.

The Micro dermal abrasion treatment consists in removing the outer layer of the skin mechanically. Practically it is as if you are sanding off the epidermal layer, by doing so the skin response is to start producing new collagen to recreate the outer layer lost.

 

micro-dermabrasion

 

After every treatment the new skin will be less uneven and if the treatment is repeated a number of time there will be a visible improvement in the appearance of the acne scars.

The downtime is 3 to 4 days depending on the individual and the depth of the treatment. Cabs may form after each treatment and they should fall by themselves.
Click here to return to the top

Skin resurfacing using cosmetic peels.

The collagen regeneration process can also be started chemically, using the appropriate skin peeling products and other ingredients to stimulate the skin regeneration process. Cosmetic peels have been scientifically proven to improve the appearance of acne scars of time.

chemical-peel-for acne scarsThe advantage of using cosmetic peels is that they are relatively inexpensive and easily available on the market. These treatments can either be carried out by aesthetic professionals in a cosmetic clinical environment but also at home.

The use of cosmetic peels presents several advantages versus the other treatments available:

  • Generally safe, they are very unlikely to be misused either by you or the aesthetic professional or yourself at home.
  • They present very little downtime compared to other professional treatments available. The downtime is typically either none or it presents itself in some form of redness and flaky skin while the peeling is in progress. No bleeding occurs during the treatment and no scabs form during “healing”.
  • These products are generally very easy to use and they lead to very good improvements in the appearance of acne and chickenpox scars.
  • Cosmetic peels are generally widely available on the market.

If you are interested in this option we have made an ad hoc product for Acne Scar attenuation at home. For more information click here.
Click here to return to the top

 

 

 

 

Dermal fillers.

dermal fillers for acne scars attenuationDermal fillers are one of the options proposed in cosmetic clinics in order to improve the appearance of the appearance of atrophic scars including some acne scars.

The concept behind the use of fillers for acne scars attenuation is to “fill” the depressed area of the atrophic scar. Which is different to most of the other aesthetic treatments for acne scars attenuation.

Normally the results are quite good and almost immediate. The downside of this particaula type of  aesthetic treatment is that, although the results are very good, the fillers are slowly reabsorbed by the body. Unfortunately for this reason, the results are not permanent.

The downtime is minimal or none.
Click here to return to the top

 

 

 

 

 

Combination of various aesthetic treatments.

Combination of aesthetic treatments present the best results. The most popular combination of treatments is performed when treating deep “ice pick” type of scars. In this case the first treatment is the use of minor surgery followed by any of the aesthetic treatments available described in this web page to further smooth the skin.

Other combinations can be, a course of microneedling followed by the suitable cosmetic peels once the are has recovered, laser treatment followed by microneedling, microdermal abrasion followed by microneedling etc. The one treatment that is generally not combined with others is the use of dermal fillers because this is only a temporary remedy while the others have more permanent effects.
Click here to return to the top