Can My Stretch Marks Be Improved?
Stretch marks can be red, white or almost normal skin colored. In all cases the stretch mark skin is thinner than the normal skin around the stretch mark. All aspects of stretch marks can be improved with laser treatment.
How Can I Fade My Stretch Marks With Laser Treatments?
Early red stretch marks can be improved with the pulsed dye laser. Generally around 5 monthly laser treatments are required to significantly lessen the redness. However, older stretch marks show both whitening of the skin (hypopigmentation) and thinning of the skin (atrophy). An innovative laser treatment technique, using the excimer laser has been developed for the treatment of the white skin associated with stretch marks. The original research on this laser for the treatment of these stretch marks was developed at Skin Laser & Surgery Specialists. The laser emits short powerful pulses of ultraviolet light that stimulate the pigment-producing cells of the skin (melanocytes) to make melanin. The melanin results in a darkening of the white stretch marks and brings the stretch mark skin closer to the natural color of the surrounding skin. By decreasing the whiteness of the stretch marks and making the skin color more normal, the stretch marks become much less noticeable.
The think skin of stretch marks can also now be improved with either the Fraxel laser or eMatrix sublative rejuvenation.
Although many “over-the-counter” remedies claim to remove or improve stretch marks, only laser treatments have been shown in clinical studies to improve the appearance of stretch marks. Therefore, it is the only proven treatment available for this common problem.
Is There Pain With Laser Treatment Of Stretch Marks?
There is minimal to no pain from the procedure. The most the patient feels is a slightly warm sensation. Over the first 24-48 hours, the skin in the treated area may turn a light pink as with mild sunburn. The skin will then gradually improve after a series of treatments. There is no bleeding and no open wound so band-aids and other dressings are usually not needed.
What Are Expected Results?
It is important to remember that laser treatment of stretch marks does not make the skin look completely normal. The treatment makes the marks appear less noticeable but they are still present. Some patients have greater improvement than others. At present, it is impossible to predict what the exact degree of improvement will be for any given patient with stretch marks. However, virtually all patients show some degree of improvement in stretch marks that were untreatable in the past.
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