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Non-Ablative Laser Resurfacing Specialist

Non-ablative laser resurfacing is a good option for people who want the benefits offered by laser resurfacing, even though they may not be good candidates for that type of treatment. With a non-ablative laser, skin tone, texture, and pigmentation can be greatly improved. Dr. Evan Ransom at San Francisco Cosmetic Laser Institute in San Francisco, California offers non-ablative laser treatments including the Erbium: YAG laser and the Icon™ Palomar.

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Non-Ablasive Laser Resurfacing Q&A

by Evan Ransom, M.D.

How is non-ablative laser resurfacing different than ablative laser resurfacing?
Non-ablative laser resurfacing is a type of cosmetic enhancement that doesn’t require the removal of tissue like ablative laser resurfacing does. Ablative lasers like the CO2 laser use concentrated energy bursts to vaporize the surface of the skin at high heat levels. Although ablative lasers can be quite efficient, they aren’t well suited for everyone, and not everyone can commit to the downtime associated with this type of skin resurfacing. Non-ablative lasers are safe and quite effective, but they take more time to yield results. Non-ablative laser skin resurfacing may be ideal for patients who want to improve their skin dramatically through a series of treatments.
What lasers are used in non-ablative laser resurfacing?
Dr. Ransom uses the Cynosure Icon Palomar 1540 and Er: YAG 2940 lasers to get excellent results in non-ablative laser resurfacing treatments. These lasers, which use wavelengths 1540nm and 2940nm, are a more refined and newer version of the first fractional non-ablative laser, the Fraxel.
What types of skin issues can be treated with non-ablative laser resurfacing?
Non-ablative laser resurfacing with the Cynosure Icon Palomar 1540 and Er: YAG 2940 can help with a broad range of skin issues. These lasers can improve skin texture, reduce pore size, smooth away fine lines and wrinkles, reduce acne scars, reduce surgical scars, eliminate sun spots, and decrease melasma. While non-ablative laser resurfacing can help with many common skin problems, the results won’t be as dramatic as those achieved with ablative laser resurfacing.
How does treatment work?
The Cynosure Icon Palomar 1540 uses fractional technology, which means only a small part of the skin gets the laser energy. Thousands of microscopic columns of laser energy are generated and sent deep into the skin in the treatment areas. The surrounding skin is completely unaffected. The laser energy deep within the skin agitates the skin to stimulate new collagen production, which then creates a smoothing and plumping of the skin in the targeted areas. Over time, scars are filled in, folds are lifted up, and skin looks younger and tighter overall. Most people will need 3-5 sessions scheduled 2-4 weeks apart.


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