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TCA Cross #1 December 17, 2009

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So, I just had my first TCA Cross this past Thursday in Chicago, Illinois by Dr. Anil Shah. I am from Indianapolis, In and after much research on the internet, I stumbled upon and chose him due to his approach to acne scars. He doesn't care for lasers. He knows they can't solve acne scarring. He does TCA Cross: 100 % applied directly to the scar, Medical CIT Dermarolling, Subcision, and Dermabrasion using a different approach. He's a really nice, genuine, caring facial plastic surgeon and I've been to my share of offices having 3 Palomar's done and 4 Fraxel Repair...Palomar did nothing. The fraxel has helped with a bit a of smoothing and overall skin texture and appearance...no diminishing of scars sadly...and if there was any, nothing dramatically noticeable.

Anyhow, I had my first TCA Cross Thursday. The spots are still a brownish tint, scabbing here shortly I imagine. The pain was minimal, just a stinging. Which I personally like because I feel the scar burning ;)

Honestly, looking in the mirror a bit after I feel as if some of the picks closed a tad...it could just be me. After accessing my scarring, which he claims is not the worst, he chose to do a series of 5, more than likely 3, TCA applications. Then if need be he said he would do subcision and possibly a dermabrasion on certain areas, not full face. I am letting the pro take control as he is a very well known Dr. who is considered a skin expert. I must say, I do hate looking like I have acne again due to these spots :(

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Hey there, I'm going to follow this thread as I'm interrested in this cross myself.

You say you had 4 fraxel re:pair treatments and none of your scars got better? Wow, I'm really starting to think this entire fractional laser thing is the scam of the century.

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Hey MCHLLE, thanks for following. I used to be on this site like 5 years back when I just had an issue with acne...Accutane eventually took care of that and I didn't begin really worrying about my scars, which my Accutane breakout caused in my opinion, until about 2 years ago. Yeah, I'm pretty positive it was Fraxel: RePair. Especially, after looking online and seeing the device that office uses...which is the Repair. I already basically had this thought and knowledge in my head, but Dr. Shah told me that the way the skin is made up, with it's multiple layers, lasers are only capable of so much which is focused on the surface, as much as they claim, they just can't get deep enough...not deep enough where more moderate acne scars reside. Fraxel did help my skin tone and may have helped some more superficial scarring but didn't do much for my areas of concern.

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4 Fraxel re:pairs is ALOT though, are you certain it wasn't Fraxel re:store? What was your downtime like?

About the depth thing, I believe re:pair goes about 1,6mm deep into the skin. Isn't that alot deeper than a TCA cross treatment will ever go?

I got all my scars from the accutane breakout too.

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I wish I could find the website that said what offices had what machines, but that's how I came to the realization that it was the Repair, and I want to say I recall looking at the label...but I kinda forget.

Um, the way TCA works, which you are probably aware of, is "Chemical Reconstruction Of Skin Scars" CROSS. The acid causes the skin underneath the scar to plump up elevating the scar. This is considered the best treatment available for Ice Pick scarring.

It sucks about Accutane, it cleared my skin and I am grateful, but at times, I wonder what would've happened had I waited it out...scar wise.

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It's nuts we both feel that way. It's really hard because I wanted to be put on it so badly, just wanting it to end the cycle. Now it's a different kind of cycle we are in now :(

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Hi guys, I actually live in Chicago..where is he at; can you message me his information as to where his practice is, if you don't want to put it on the board. I am going on what I call a dermatology tour to like 10 different derms and p.s.'s in the Chicago area to see what each one of these clowns, I mean practitioners tell me. I just want to see if they are consistent in their medical advice and to see how much they charge for their laser procedures . I do want to see this guy about the TCA cross though. OUt of all of the things I have had done to my face, I have never had this. How much did it cost??

Also, do you guys think the accutane caused acne scars? I was on it twice. Hhmmmm.

Please keep us updated on the process and your outcome. Thanks for posting!

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Okay, I just googled him. He is in the Water Tower! Yeah! I am actually going to see another Plastic Surgeon there tomorrow. I will make an appointment while I am there! This will be part of my acne scar plan! THanks for posting this, really!

How much was this procedure compared to the lasers??

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I will try to get on some pics here at some point...it's kinda hard to get good ones on my macbook showing what's going on, but I'll try. I haven't been as comfortable with many Dr.'s as I have with just one meeting with Dr. Shah. He is in Watertower Place - 9th floor. He gave me a little deal for being a student...maybe a couple hundred off. But he charged 850 for my set of 5...and if I only do three, it will still be 850. That is just his package price. For all I was quoted for, TCA, Dermabrasion, and Subcision...it was around 1800. I don't mind the pricing for the skill this guy possesses. Look him up and check out his work, he really is top notch all together.

Most of my scarring is on my cheeks and a little on my forehead. There are a few spots, depressions, that I still think he will need to subcise but he wants to see the reaction to this, as subsicion isn't his favorite procedure so he said.

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Hi Leo or anyone else,

How are things going since you saw Dr. Shah? Please keep us updated! I am very interested in him, and I wish you success.

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Well, it's been a while since I've been on here to respond to anything. Sowwy :(

Anyway, I had my second treatment with Shah on January 8th. I'm still waiting for the redness to completely subside...that is the hardest part about this process, being male and dealing with the dark spots. He just told me to schedule again once the discoloration is gone...he said he's seen it last 5 weeks or maybe even more. I'm almost on through the 4th week. Not too noticeable, just annoying.

When I see the scarring in bright light which shines in through the window, in my harsh as hell bathroom mirror, I do notice some filling in...it's nice to actually notice it and know it isn't just wishful thinking. This treatment doesn't work overnight unfortunately, it's a progression over time.

To answer a question on where my pick scarring was, it is on my cheeks. It's interesting because they aren't really pock marks, just depressed little picks. But I also have some deeper saucer like scars that he has been doing but will more that likely subcise when it is all said and done, but you never know.

I want to do a light peel for my overall skin tone and texture but am not quite sure if it is safe to do now? I think it is because my skin isn't irritated nor are the spots, obviously. I want to try this TCA Latte peel. It comes highly recommended.

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Hey Leo,

Congrats on getting gradual improvement. I hope it keeps up.

I was wondering if you had talked to Dr. Shah about a couple of things I am wondering: punch technique for very small picks and whether he's ever seen scars get bigger with his TCA application.

Thanks, and please keep us posted. I get a good feeling about Dr. Shah by looking at his site and hearing from others.

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I have some small picks and TCA is what he wanted to do. I believe the only treatments he does are what is listed on his site, but he also is a world renowned facial plastic surgeon so who knows.

I'm trying to get some pics up here now. It's hard to see the scars though, kinda :/ damn.

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Hey Leo, nice to see you are getting improvement! Those pics don't really help though, take them in harsh lighting ;)

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leo

how long did it take for your scabs to fall off? I had a tca cross done yesterday, am hoping they will all go by next week!!

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I will try to get some better pics up, I promise! haha. Umm, I'd say it's taken about 2-3 days for them to actually scab and maybe another 2-3 to fall off. Some of the scabs will stubborn but if you lightly rub them, they will flake off. Don't pick and pull, but a little rub with no irritation won't hurt. I only do this when they feel ready as well.

With the first treatment, the redness went away completely in about a week to ten days. After the second one, it gets more intense thus I'm still waiting to be completely free of redness.

Dr. Shah said 5, but thinks we may only get to three. Last appointment he said we may take it easy on the forehead and keep pluggin' away at the cheeks. The forehead skin is more sensitive and thin.

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I will try to get some better pics up, I promise! haha. Umm, I'd say it's taken about 2-3 days for them to actually scab and maybe another 2-3 to fall off. Some of the scabs will stubborn but if you lightly rub them, they will flake off. Don't pick and pull, but a little rub with no irritation won't hurt. I only do this when they feel ready as well.

With the first treatment, the redness went away completely in about a week to ten days. After the second one, it gets more intense thus I'm still waiting to be completely free of redness.

Dr. Shah said 5, but thinks we may only get to three. Last appointment he said we may take it easy on the forehead and keep pluggin' away at the cheeks. The forehead skin is more sensitive and thin.

yeah mine scabbed by the end of the first day and i am now going into 4th day hoping that by 6th day scabs will fall off

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