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jenniferG

Just had Fraxel Laser #1

I just had my first Fraxel laser treatment. Here's all the details if you are interested:

The Doctor chose Fraxel because she felt that was the best for my skin. She also liked a new laser 1440 (somehting like that) but it just got it's FDA approval like last week - will have a new name like Afirm (?).

My scars are like the skin of an orange.

My past scar treatment background: I had a dermabrasion about 10 years ago with Dr. Orentrich in NYC - I got maybe 10% improvemtn. He also did punch grafts on my ice pick scars and I was extremely happy with the results of that.

I had a TCA/Jessners peel with cross TCA about a year ago here in Maryland. Got about 25% results.

Today:

Went in about an hour before my scheduled treatment to get blue (dark blue) and numbing cream applied. It needs 1 hour for the numbing cream to be effective. I just had the Fraxel on my cheeks. The area where I have scars.

When they were ready for the treatment, they put tape over my eyes and cotton balls in my ears (they said the air from the cooling machine would be lound and they didn't want me to get air in my ears. BTW - I told them (thanks to you all) to do 20 / 125 (I know most of you say 1250 but this was the setting she used). She said this was very aggressive. I asked her to do at least 3-4 passes she actually did 7-8 passes and then extra on my most scarred areas.

What it felt like: It felt like a slight sting but it wasn't bad at all. When they got to more delicate areas (like close to my eye area of the edges of my face, I felt it more) but it might sound crazy but I like the pain on my face it's kind of like a punishment for my bad skin. Plus I know it's all for the better. I waited so long to be able to get some treatments done, so the pain wont really bother me. No pain , no gain. Right?

What I felt like: I felt a little clostophobic because of the tape over my eyes. I also started to get a little panicky because you can actually hear the singing sound of the bottom layer of your skin burning (at least thats how it sounded to me), I also got worried that I would be the only bad case of this procedure and be worse then I was before. I guess all normal worries....

I then washed as much of the blue dye off as possible. Although I can still see the blue edges. My skin burned from washing it with Dial soap in the office (they said that would help with the dye). I asked them to apply some more numbing cream before I left the office.

Now - My skin is still blue and I can see the redness beneath the blue. It feels tight and tingling. I will put ice packs on and sleep with my head elevated. They also gave me eucerin anti-reddness cream, They told me to expect some swelling and redness with possibly some blood spots.

I think if you want a very aggressive doctor in the Baltimore area I have the best Dr.'s.

I hope this is helpful. I will keep you posted on my progress. I am very happy that this board exists and that there are such wonderful people that share their experiences. I am very grateful to all of you that have given me hope and knowledge. Thank you!!!! Okay enough of that mushy stuff.

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Hope it rids your scars. Are you going to post every day.

I will post with any new developements. Hopefully it will benefit someone. Let's just keep our fingers crossed.

BTW- I am now starting to see some swelling. I will apply ice packs when I can. (I have 3 kids under 6).

Also, just washed again to get rid of more blue - that didn't work just made me feel tighter. Also applied Eucerin cream.

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Thanks for the description of the procedure! I look forward to your future posts as I am wanting to have this done after I have my baby in the Fall. When you said that your skin was like orange peel, is it mainly enlarged pores and scarred pores? That's what I struggle with. Let me know. Thanks!!!

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yes, enlarged pores and scars. Congrats on the baby! Try to do as much as you can while the baby is little. It becomes very hard to juggle the kids activities while I am having stuff done. I wish I did all of this before kids or when they were babies.

Thanks for the description of the procedure! I look forward to your future posts as I am wanting to have this done after I have my baby in the Fall. When you said that your skin was like orange peel, is it mainly enlarged pores and scarred pores? That's what I struggle with. Let me know. Thanks!!!

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Who did this procedures in Baltimore. I am trying to find a good dermatologist in Maryland. How much costs fraxel?

Dr. MArgaret Weiss $500. Their web site is: http://www.dabaltimore.com/index.html

Good luck!

Do you know if Fraxel is safe for people with active acne?? How does it stand against people prone to breakouts?

I think it's okay for active acne.

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I gotta tell you although I still look like a Smufette and I have some swelling (remember I only had my cheeks done) I don't look too bad. I am taking my daughter out to dance today and school in the afternoon. I know from reading the boards that the swelling makes the scars look better, but I have to say I really don't see much scarring anymore. If it stays like this, I will be very happy. But will I stop....probably not.

How long does the blue dye last? Any tips on getting it off?

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I gotta tell you although I still look like a Smufette and I have some swelling (remember I only had my cheeks done) I don't look too bad. I am taking my daughter out to dance today and school in the afternoon. I know from reading the boards that the swelling makes the scars look better, but I have to say I really don't see much scarring anymore. If it stays like this, I will be very happy. But will I stop....probably not.

How long does the blue dye last? Any tips on getting it off?

Just an FYI - I don't know if this information is correct or not, since i have not had fraxel done, BUT I went in for a consultation in Dr. Rokshar's practice, and they told me that you are not to use ice packs or cold compresses after fraxel. They said that part of the reason it works is because of the heat/energy under the skin, and that ice packs will undo what fraxel is trying to do.

I just thought I'd share what I've been told.

Thanks & good luck!

L

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Please keep this log going, move it to the logs so I can read and hope this will work for me in the future.

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Okay, I just called to schedule my next fraxil but they suggested I have a 1440 laser instead. This is the one that just got FDA approval (it will have a new name I think Afirm) They said this works the same as Fraxil but without any pain and no blue dye. I scheduled for MArch 13 (exactly 1 month for yesterday - my first Fraxil).

I asked about the ice packs and cold compresses - They told me that it was fine to use them.

I am still slightly blue but no one noticed until I pointed it out. I can't believe that I had this procedure almost 24 hours ago and I am able to be seen in public. Amazing!!!!

The doctors office told me to make a past with Cetaphil soap and leave it on for a while that might help with the blue dye.

I'll keep you posted.

Thanks for your support!!

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I gotta tell you although I still look like a Smufette and I have some swelling (remember I only had my cheeks done) I don't look too bad. I am taking my daughter out to dance today and school in the afternoon. I know from reading the boards that the swelling makes the scars look better, but I have to say I really don't see much scarring anymore. If it stays like this, I will be very happy. But will I stop....probably not.

How long does the blue dye last? Any tips on getting it off?

Hi Jennifer, I was wondering, how long before the surgery did they apply the blue dye? Mine was applied just before and came off quite easily w/palmolive soap..

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I gotta tell you although I still look like a Smufette and I have some swelling (remember I only had my cheeks done) I don't look too bad. I am taking my daughter out to dance today and school in the afternoon. I know from reading the boards that the swelling makes the scars look better, but I have to say I really don't see much scarring anymore. If it stays like this, I will be very happy. But will I stop....probably not.

How long does the blue dye last? Any tips on getting it off?

Hi Jennifer, I was wondering, how long before the surgery did they apply the blue dye? Mine was applied just before and came off quite easily w/palmolive soap..

They put it on an hour before my procedure right befoer they applied the numbing cream.

I just got most of if off with the soap paste. I think I am also seeing some of the green pigment in the Eucerin Redness releif cream.

I am also starting to see very small blood spots. The size of a needle head on my cheeks. Nothing too bad yet. Still a little swelling but I have to say it's looking pretty good. Might even try to be sexy for Valentines day? Who knows?

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I gotta tell you although I still look like a Smufette and I have some swelling (remember I only had my cheeks done) I don't look too bad. I am taking my daughter out to dance today and school in the afternoon. I know from reading the boards that the swelling makes the scars look better, but I have to say I really don't see much scarring anymore. If it stays like this, I will be very happy. But will I stop....probably not.

How long does the blue dye last? Any tips on getting it off?

Hi Jennifer, I was wondering, how long before the surgery did they apply the blue dye? Mine was applied just before and came off quite easily w/palmolive soap..

They put it on an hour before my procedure right befoer they applied the numbing cream.

I just got most of if off with the soap paste. I think I am also seeing some of the green pigment in the Eucerin Redness releif cream.

I am also starting to see very small blood spots. The size of a needle head on my cheeks. Nothing too bad yet. Still a little swelling but I have to say it's looking pretty good. Might even try to be sexy for Valentines day? Who knows?

Hi Jennifer, I'm not sure if they have to put the blue dye on for that long. I had my 1st Fraxel last Friday W/ Dr Geronemus in NYC. Theyput it on after the numbing cream has been on for an hour. They told me through trial and error that it is much easier to take the blue dye off your face when it is applied just before doing the Fraxel. I don't think there is any gain in putting it on for so long. You should ask them if there is any benefit by doing that and if not see if they will put it on after the numbing cream. I can speak from my experience that the dye came off completely after they were done. I used palmolive also..

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Thanks for your reply. I don't know why they put it on for so long. But I wont have to woryy about the blue dye when I have the 1440. I hope this suggestion helps others.

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Just wanted to let everyone know that I am currently having the 1440 laser treatments in Baltimore Maryland and would be happy to answer any questions. I have had 5 treatments and have seen some decent results in my shallower scars-anywhere from 20-50% improvement depending on the scar. Not much yet w/deeper scars. I mostly have ice pick and some irregular shaped scars on cheeks and chin area. I also have a few rolling/saucer shaped scars-minimal improvement on these yet. I had two dermabrasions about 20 years ago, but did not do subcision or any other treatments prior to the 1440, as per my dermatologists susuggestions.

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Goblin--I sent you a PM. Thanks for your post.

Jennifer and Goblin--how much is the new 1440 laser per treatment, and how many treatments are suggested (example, Fraxel is usually 5).

ANy information on the difference between the Fraxel and 1440 is greatly appreciated!

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Goblin--I sent you a PM. Thanks for your post.

Jennifer and Goblin--how much is the new 1440 laser per treatment, and how many treatments are suggested (example, Fraxel is usually 5).

ANy information on the difference between the Fraxel and 1440 is greatly appreciated!

They told me the colst was the same as Fraxel - $500.

They told me this was the same as fraxel but no pain and no dye. They said this was the new fraxel.

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I gotta tell you although I still look like a Smufette and I have some swelling (remember I only had my cheeks done) I don't look too bad. I am taking my daughter out to dance today and school in the afternoon. I know from reading the boards that the swelling makes the scars look better, but I have to say I really don't see much scarring anymore. If it stays like this, I will be very happy. But will I stop....probably not.

How long does the blue dye last? Any tips on getting it off?

Use warm water and gentle cleanser, spray the nozzle head right at your face during shower. It should come out fairly easily in 1 shower. Maybe those on the edge are harder but if everything should be out in 24 hours.

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Does it help with wrinkles/orange peel texture so far? What kind of scars do you have?

Since I don't know what the results are yet, I can't comment on if it works for those types of issues. My sknin is like an orange peel. Very large pores and shallow scars.

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Jennifer,

do you still have some swelling? Hows everything looking so far? Still pleased? (even though its still fairly early)

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Jennifer,

do you still have some swelling? Hows everything looking so far? Still pleased? (even though its still fairly early)

I had some swelling on my right side of my face this morning. I think it was the way I slpt on it. It went down after being up and around. I still have some minor swelling but I think I can just notice it.

The Blue dye is gone and I have a sun burn look. Not bad (I have been sun burnt many, many times before) It has the feeling of sand paper. It is starting to flake- not peel. Can't use any makeup (I use Bare Minerals from Sephora - great stuff but really bad for dry , flaking skin.

I used a ton of moisturizer (Green tinted Eucerin - helps with the red) and sunscreen.

I will keep you posted.

Scars still look good but I am sure once all the swelling goes down the scars will be back. It would be nice if they didn't but I guess I need to expect it to.

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