Brown spots, redness and fine lines and wrinkles can be incredibly aging. Depending on your lifestyle choices, particularly how much time you’ve spent in the sun, these issues may creep up early. Lasers, a catch-all term for all lasers and energy based devices, are a great first step for rejuvenating the skin on your face, neck, chest, hands, and arms. Dr. Sean Doherty is particularly experienced with lasers. He offers his Boston patients a wide range of choice including:
CO2 Laser: The CO2 laser is one of the earliest ablative lasers. Extremely effective for reversing the effects of significant sun damage such as brown spots and fine lines and wrinkles, this laser does require about 2 weeks of downtime. It literally removes a portion of the surface of the skin while also stimulating the deeper layers of tissue. The result is a revitalized, fresh, younger-looking you.
Erbium Laser: The Erbium laser is also an ablative laser. It has a slightly lower level of penetration into the skin than the CO2 laser. The right choice between the two is going to depend on a patient’s skin type, how much downtime you can afford and which areas of the face and body are being treated.
PicoSure Laser: The PicoSure Laser is known as an effective tattoo removal device. But plastic surgeons quickly found that the speed and efficacy of this non-ablative laser make it ideal for skin rejuvenation. One of the many advantages of this particular laser is that it works on all skin types including darker skin. Dr. Doherty uses the PicoSure to treat aged skin, pigment, scars and stretch marks.
1540nm Laser: The 1540 nm is another non-ablative laser option. The advantage of non-ablative lasers often referred to as “Fraxel”, is that they don’t totally damage the outer surface of the skin (also known as the epidermis). Ironically, these lasers actually penetrate deeper than an ablative device, but the recovery is faster. Patients walk out of a non-ablative laser treatment looking as if they’ve just got a bit of a sunburn. However, unlike ablative laser treatments, it will take more than one procedure to achieve optimum results. A series of 3-4 treatments done monthly is recommended.
IPL or Intense Pulse Light: Often referred to as a photo facial, IPL is not a laser. It is an energy based treatment that is ideal for addressing some of the earliest signs of aging such as: hyperpigmentation, redness, and telangiectasia which are the small, broken blood vessels that often crop up with age and sun exposure. It requires no downtime, but you will need a series of treatments to achieve optimum results. Also, sun exposure needs to be avoided following these treatments.
Pellevé: This is a radio frequency or RF procedure. RF is not actually a laser. Instead, it uses heat to penetrate into the deep layers of your skin in order to promote collagen production. The goal of a Pellevé treatment is not necessarily to improve skin tone and texture, but, rather, to tighten the skin in the treatment area non-surgically. Extremely effective in the right patient, it will require multiple treatments in order to achieve your end results.
Profound: This procedure combines an RF treatment with micro-needling to further improve your skin tightening results. Microneedling is a device that produces a series of tiny pricks to gently “injure” the skin. This, in turn, causes your body to respond by producing collagen which is literally the fountain of youth. Dr. Doherty likes to use Profound for improving the look of the lower face and neck non-surgically, but it’s also great for treating the crepiness and sag of aged skin on the arms, medial thighs and knees.