Laser Resurfacing (cont.)
In this Article
Erbium Laser Resurfacing
Erbium laser resurfacing is designed to remove surface-level and moderately deep lines and wrinkles on the face, hands, neck, or chest. One of the benefits of erbium laser resurfacing is minimal burning of surrounding tissue. This laser causes fewer side effects -- such as swelling, bruising, and redness -- so your recovery time should be faster than with CO2 laser resurfacing. In some cases, recovery may only take one week Ask your doctor how long recovery is likely to take for you.
If you have a darker skin tone, erbium laser resurfacing may work better for you.
Preparing for Laser Resurfacing
Start by consulting a plastic surgeon or dermatologist to find out if you're a good candidate. Be sure to choose a doctor who has documented training and experience in laser skin resurfacing. The doctor will determine which laser treatment is best for you after considering your medical history, current health, and desired results.
If you decide to go ahead with laser skin resurfacing, your doctor will ask you to avoid taking any medications or supplements that can affect clotting -- such as aspirin, ibuprofen, or vitamin E -- for 10 days before surgery.
If you smoke, you should stop for two weeks before and after the procedure. Smoking can prolong healing.
Your doctor may prescribe an antibiotic beforehand to prevent bacterial infections and also an antiviral medication if you are prone to cold sores or fever blisters.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 6/26/2012