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Holls77

Fraxel Laser scheduled

I live in Chicago not too far from Elmhurst. I was considering Dr. Kovak, do you like him? Is he reasonable? I might consider going for a consult if you like him and have had great success. I am seeing another Derm right now, but would like to go for a second opinion.

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The difference between the Fraxel and other non-ablative lasers is that it penetrates the skin a little differently than the others. If you can imagine a newsprint photo up close, you'll see thousands of pixels that ultimately create the image you are looking at, right? Well, that Fraxel penetrates the skin in this fashion. It damages the skin in tiny microscopic areas, sort of like this, ..........., which in turn, spares healthy tissue. Each of these areas, while healing, is expected to expand and merge with neighboring areas, basically treating the entire region without all the damage and with great healing time. From my understanding, the Fraxel is similar to other non-ablative lasers in how it treats the skin, but the method of penetration and how that process works is highly new technology.

As far as my skin becoming tighter, that is not the first description I would use to describe my improvements. However, I have heard some ladies who have had the treatment say that. I think mainly because they are being treated for wrinkles and sun damage so it's easier to see the "tightness" after the procedure. I'm just more focussed on those damn scars! biggrin.gif

PS. This last treatment on Monday seems to be giving me some good results!!! biggrin.gif

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My dermatologist is at the UCLA medical center as well and he recommended that I talk to Dr. Moy about the Fraxel laser. I called Dr. Moy and was also quoted $900 per treatment for 4 treatments. At that point I was like "thanks but no thanks". That seems really, really expensive for a product that has just come on the market and isn't proven effective.

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vb777, tks again for the info.. Sounds like you are getting your money's worth.

Has anyone mentioned to you that the Fraxel can be effective for treating oily

skin or could also be used on upper eyelids? Tks..CH

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I haven't heard about the Fraxel being used to treat oily skin or used on the upper eyelids...I can't imagine it being used on your eyelids! That would be too painful!! OUCH!!!!

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I haven't heard about the Fraxel being used to treat oily skin or used on the upper eyelids...I can't imagine it being used on your eyelids!  That would be too painful!!  OUCH!!!!

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Well, I it has been about two weeks since my last treatment with the fraxel and from my point of view, my last two treatments (4&5) have seemed to be the most effective. The question is, are my improvements from these last two treatments or are my improvements the results from my first few treatments I had in June July and August???? Dr. Fitzpatrick deffinitely increased the setting of the laser these last two treatments, so who knows. I was able to see one of my "before" pictures (taken right before my 2nd treatment), but I didn't have a picture right next to it to compare the improvements and plus, I just received the treatment so I couldn't compare in the mirror. I am happy with my improvements. Like I said before, I don't wear as much makeup, my scars are not nearly as deep, and my overall skin tone is great. It is funny when I hear people say in these forums that they have had poor results or that they didn't see much improvement with whatever treatment they use, TCA, Dermabrassion, Smoothbeam,ect., improvement is all relative. I know that I am not going to get 100% results from really, anything...this is the start of a LONG process to get the best I can from my skin. To me, laser treatment, specifically, the Fraxel Laser, has given me results that I am happy with. I don't have pictures to show at this time, sorry.

As for the cost of this laser, it is very pricey and it is only going to get worse! I have been lucky because Reliant Tech. is located in San Diego and so I had my last two treatments for free because I was asked to do a news bit for a local channel and a newsprint bit for a local paper, so my costs for 5 treatments is $1,500...sweet deal! If you have any specific questions, ask me, I will give you an honest answer since not very many people have used this laser for scarred skin. Good luck!:)

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Elmhurst IL what a small world i live at elmhurst IL where is Dr Kovak clinic located in elmhurst??  i hope that thing go well and please keep us updated.

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I wouldn't be surprised if he canceled because of observed adverse effects. "I'm not sure of the in-and-outs" sounds like a euphemism.

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Well, I it has been about two weeks since my last treatment with the fraxel and from my point of view, my last two treatments (4&5) have seemed to be the most effective.  The question is, are my improvements from these last two treatments or are my improvements the results from my first few treatments I had in June July and August????  Dr. Fitzpatrick deffinitely increased the setting of the laser these last two treatments, so who knows.  I was able to see one of my "before" pictures (taken right before my 2nd treatment), but I didn't have a picture right next to it to compare the improvements and plus, I just received the treatment so I couldn't compare in the mirror.  I am happy with my improvements.  Like I said before, I don't wear as much makeup, my scars are not nearly as deep, and my overall skin tone is great.  It is funny when I hear people say in these forums that they have had poor results or that they didn't see much improvement with whatever treatment they use, TCA, Dermabrassion, Smoothbeam,ect., improvement is all relative.  I know that I am not going to get 100% results from really, anything...this is the start of a LONG process to get the best I can from my skin.  To me, laser treatment, specifically, the Fraxel Laser, has given me results that I am happy with.  I don't have pictures to show at this time, sorry. 

As for the cost of this laser, it is very pricey and it is only going to get worse!  I have been lucky because Reliant Tech. is located in San Diego and so I had my last two treatments for free because I was asked to do a news bit for a local channel and a newsprint bit for a local paper, so my costs for 5 treatments is $1,500...sweet deal!  If you have any specific questions, ask me, I will give you an honest answer since not very many people have used this laser for scarred skin.  Good luck!:)

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Well, I it has been about two weeks since my last treatment with the fraxel and from my point of view, my last two treatments (4&5) have seemed to be the most effective.  The question is, are my improvements from these last two treatments or are my improvements the results from my first few treatments I had in June July and August????  Dr. Fitzpatrick deffinitely increased the setting of the laser these last two treatments, so who knows.  I was able to see one of my "before" pictures (taken right before my 2nd treatment), but I didn't have a picture right next to it to compare the improvements and plus, I just received the treatment so I couldn't compare in the mirror.  I am happy with my improvements.  Like I said before, I don't wear as much makeup, my scars are not nearly as deep, and my overall skin tone is great.  It is funny when I hear people say in these forums that they have had poor results or that they didn't see much improvement with whatever treatment they use, TCA, Dermabrassion, Smoothbeam,ect., improvement is all relative.  I know that I am not going to get 100% results from really, anything...this is the start of a LONG process to get the best I can from my skin.  To me, laser treatment, specifically, the Fraxel Laser, has given me results that I am happy with.  I don't have pictures to show at this time, sorry. 

As for the cost of this laser, it is very pricey and it is only going to get worse!  I have been lucky because Reliant Tech. is located in San Diego and so I had my last two treatments for free because I was asked to do a news bit for a local channel and a newsprint bit for a local paper, so my costs for 5 treatments is $1,500...sweet deal!  If you have any specific questions, ask me, I will give you an honest answer since not very many people have used this laser for scarred skin.  Good luck!:)

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I haven't had any real side effects...yet...knock on wood! JK I guess the only real side effects that I've had are breakouts about a week or so after each treatment. Now, don't get freaked out with the word breakout, I know it's hard not to but let me explain. First of all, the blue dye/ink that they put on your skin during prep is thee hardest crap to get off your face! Second, they put greasy numbing cream on your face and you are expected to keep aquaphor on your skin for the first week. Now that combo equals "huge breakout" when I think about how my skin reacts to different products! However, these breakouts are not that bad.

With the first treatment, I used the aquaphor for about 5 days to keep my skin from drying out and I soon broke out with small, little bumbs along my jawline...nothing you could see, I could just feel it, and I've never broken out along my jawline before! I was nervous. However, my doctor put me on an antibiotic and it totally cleared up within that week. The second time, my Doctor told me to use the aquaphor for only one day and use my oil free moisterizer to control the drying and I didn't really breakout, but I did get DRY...not such a good thing either. The only time that I can really say "I broke out" was after my 4th treatment. This was the first time I experienced pimples that were noticeable and tender. It's funny because I only used the aquaphor once, yet I failed to be consistent with the antibiotics. That combo of drying and no antibiotics resulted in the breakout it only lasted about a week too. Now, for this 5th treatment...knock on wood again please, I didn't breakout and haven't!!! I used the aquaphor everyday for about a week and started to take the antibiotics three day prior to treatment and for about two weeks after. So, if you are worried about these breakouts, I really think it is important to use the aquaphor and an antibiotic while doing these treatments. Again, the breakouts I experienced are NOT bad, trust me, I've been through it all!

I guess that's the only side effect I've experienced. I know my skin is very sensitive. With the ink and cream and drying and everything, it's a lot for my skin to go through...but I feel like that these minor breakouts are worth it!

I've been quoted on some dermal fillers, fat injections, restalyn, but I'm not ready for that...I want to wait for something more permanent...but permanent also scares me. I am leary of putting substances like that into my body...but that's just me.

The Fraxel Laser is my first encounter in my journey to correct my skin. I looked at doing a CO2 laser back in 2001 with my doctor, Dr. Fitz., but I just left my consultation with little enthusiasm and Dr. Fitz didn't seem thrilled about doing it on my skin either...saying that the improvement percentage isn't high. Then, after graduation, I knew I wanted something done, so, I had another consultation with Fitz. and he told me about all the non-ablative lasers that work well on scarred skin, but he seemed real upbeat about the Fraxel Laser for my skin. He basically said that this laser has proven that it works great on sundamaged skin and from his experience with lasers, lasers that work great on sundamaged skin, tend to work well on scarred skin...so, he gave me a quote, and I thought it was reasonable and I set my appiontments.

So far, I pretty happy with the Fraxel Laser. I love answering your questions so please feel free to ask me anything.

PS. I've been really lucky with the price of my treatments...

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vb777 or anyone else using or considering using a Fraxel laser for treatment, how does it compare to CO2 or Erbium lasering? Does it work in the same way but minus the redness and down time? I'm trying to decide whether to have an Erbium treatment or book a few Fraxel treatments.

If the Fraxel laser is not as effective I'd rather go for the Erbium because i know ablative lasers get results.

thanks

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Guest ObiWontonKenoli
Obi I saw your pics,you really got some good improvement.I think I have the same skin type as you.what do you think about getting a dermabrasion for Dr.Y?have you considered it?

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The word on the street claims that with 4-6 treatments with the Fraxel gives you the same or similar results as a treatment with the CO2 laser. I've never had a CO2 or Ebrium treatments, so, I really can't compare. However, the great thing about the Fraxel is that you don't have the the downtime (I'm able to go out in public the next day), you don't have the messy post-treatment, and it is not as painful as the CO2...pain is the last thing we care about, I know, but it's a benefit. I think I've explained the Fraxel treatment pretty well in some of my previous posts, but the main thing about the Fraxel is that it saves healthy tissue while reconfiguring collagen over a period of time. Another thing that attracted me to the Fraxel is that it doesn't slaw off (lack of a better word) the top layers of skin like the CO2. In my opinion, CO2 lasers leave SOME skin looking tough and like plastic, if that makes sense?? I know there are a lot of people who don't necessarily have these results, but I wasn't ready to take that risk.

and for Obi...

Yes, yes, yes, I know I am sitting here ranting and raving about this great laser and I have nothing to show for it, but I do not have the pictures yet...I will get them from my doctor and trust me, I will post them...okay?

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Guest ObiWontonKenoli

and for Obi...

Yes, yes, yes, I know I am sitting here ranting and raving about this great laser and I have nothing to show for it, but I do not have the pictures yet...I will get them from my doctor and trust me, I will post them...okay?

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smile.gif Dear VB

My doctor started with the fraxel last week on her first few patients. I am scheduled to have my first one in two weeks. So far she has said the pain factor is higher then she thought it would be (atleast the first few patients cant handle the higher Levels but it is the Higher levels that produce the DEEP healing and smoothing of wrinkles and scars) She also said (and you already noted this) that the blue smurf cream is very tough to get off. Did you have to take any pain killers prior to the Fraxel and do you have any suggestions as to a post cleaning solution? ALso how quick did the redness abate? I have a Fraxel scheduled for dec 23rd but will be going to a Christmass eve party and dont want to look like santa on a cold winters day. wub.gif

The word on the street claims that with 4-6 treatments with the Fraxel gives you the same or similar results as a treatment with the CO2 laser.  I've never had a CO2 or Ebrium treatments, so, I really can't compare.  However, the great thing about the Fraxel is that you don't have the the downtime (I'm able to go out in public the next day), you don't have the messy post-treatment, and it is not as painful as the CO2...pain is the last thing we care about, I know, but it's a benefit.  I think I've explained the Fraxel treatment pretty well in some of my previous posts, but the main thing about the Fraxel is that it saves healthy tissue while reconfiguring collagen over a period of time.  Another thing that attracted me to the Fraxel is that it doesn't slaw off (lack of a better word) the top layers of skin like the CO2.  In my opinion, CO2 lasers leave SOME skin looking tough and like plastic, if that makes sense??  I know there are a lot of people who don't necessarily have these results, but I wasn't ready to take that risk.

and for Obi...

Yes, yes, yes, I know I am sitting here ranting and raving about this great laser and I have nothing to show for it, but I do not have the pictures yet...I will get them from my doctor and trust me, I will post them...okay?

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Nope, I did not take any pain killers...honestly, the pain is not that bad. It was what I expected a laser to feel like...if that makes any sense to you at all! The most pain you will feel is during the treatment. It feels like when you are cooking in a frying pan and a speck of grease hits your arm; it feels like that but it's a hundred in a row. It's not that painful because it's controlled and you're expecting it. My description of this makes everyone cringe but it's the best description I have...it's the description the lady before me used! You need to just close your eyes, pinch yourself...HARD, and it is over within 5 minutes. The hour post treatment, you will have a tiny bit of pain and a "bad sunburn" is honestly, the best way to describe it. It only lasts an hour, tops.

As for the redness, my redness only lasts about an hour or two but I know it has lasted longer for some of the other ladies I have talked to. I remain pretty swollen for the day but I go back to my daily activites the next day, however, I wear make-up which helps. The only suggestion I can make is if you have somewhere to go the next evening, make sure your Dr. doesn't use a really high setting on you. This last time my Dr. increased the intensity on me and I was homebound for two days. I had planned on going to work the next day but I had to call in. I was super swollen...it was kinda funny because that was the first time I had been that swollen. Another thing to look out for, you may get little scratch marks from the laser, that's normal; it scared me at first but they go away.

As for cleansing products, I used my normal sensitve skin, oil free cleanser, Aquaphor or Vaseline, and my normal oil free moisturizer...that's it!

Good luck with it all and keep us updated!

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Hey guys,

I have been to Dr Rappaport in NJ...I had the therma cool done last year which was supposed to be newer and better than smooth beam or n light for me in particular. It temporarily help with no lasting results. I spent a total of 1800.00 for two treatments which he said would do it. Please talk to you doc in IL that incase it does not work that you get some sort of a discount on future treatments..... Wishing you all the best you never know this could be it!

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could i do it on a friday and look normal by sunday? also, how long does the blue ink stay on???

when are you going to put up some pictures vb...i have an appointment with derm assoc in a month, but i am scared this will be more irritating than smoothbeam.

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i was wondering....how do you find out where doctors are offering the Fraxel Laser? Is anyone offering it in Houston or San Antonio?

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could i do it on a friday and look normal by sunday? also, how long does the blue ink stay on???

when are you going to put up some pictures vb...i have an appointment with derm assoc in a month, but i am scared this will be more irritating than smoothbeam.

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