Refresh Laser (Erbium) & Revive Laser (Co2) – Ablative Laser Therapies
Using laser skin resurfacing techniques, Lieberman & Parikh Facial Plastic Surgery, can treat patients in the Bay Area who have aging, sun-damaged and / or blemished skin. Our two, state-of-the-art lasers, the Refresh laser (erbium) and the Revive Laser (Co2), are both laser skin resurfacing techniques designed to remove the outer layer of skin and address topical skin issues.
While the Refresh and Revive lasers treat different conditions, both work by sending brief pulses of high-energy light into the skin and vaporizing damaged skin cells. The laser energy also stimulates underlying layers of skin which encourage the body’s own natural collagen production. As the lasered skin heals, smoother, tighter and more healthy skin is encouraged to form in its place.
Laser skin resurfacing treatments can leave patients with more natural-looking skin by improving such imperfections* as:
- Sun damage
- Crow’s feet
- Brown spots
- Chicken pox scars
- Superficial facial scars
*Individual results may vary.
How Are Laser Skin Resurfacing Procedures Performed?
Laser skin resurfacing procedures are performed on an outpatient basis using a local anesthetic to help mitigate any potential pain. Usually our nursing staff administers the Refresh laser while Drs. Lieberman and Parikh treat more severe cases with our Revive Carbon Dioxide Laser (Co2).
During both laser skin resurfacing treatments, your provider will pass the laser over the targeted area several times until the skin’s imperfections are less visible and only a smooth layer of skin remains. Depending on the size and condition of the area being treated, your Refresh or Revive treatment will last between 30 minutes to two hours. Some patients will need multiple treatments to achieve their desired results but others will meet their aesthetic goal after only one treatment.
What is The Difference Between Refresh & Revive Laser Skin Resurfacing?
Our Refresh and Revive lasers are both ablative lasers which simply means that they are designed to remove the outer layers of skin to reveal smoother, tighter and more healthy layers of skin*. The main difference is in the two therapies is the depth and intensity of treatment – Refresh is less invasive while Revive is stronger and throws heat into the deeper layers of skin to treat deeper imperfections, including deep wrinkles.
What You Need To Know About Our Refresh Laser
Who Is a Good Candidate for Refresh Laser Skin Resurfacing?
Anyone looking to improve skin texture, treat shallow wrinkles around the eyes, mouth or forehead or enhance non-responsive skin after a facelift, could consider the Refresh laser. Our Refresh laser is good for all skin types, including darker tones while IPL and our Revive laser are not. While the Refresh laser does not produce as dramatic results as the Revive laser does*, there are many advantages to Refresh:
- Less downtime after a Refresh laser skin resurfacing treatment
- Some say that the Refresh laser is not as painful as our Revive laser
- Younger patients, who need only a gentle resurfacing, will usually see results with the Refresh*
- Refresh can treat small patches of skin while Revive must be done on the entire face or other large area.
- Refresh can treat thin, delicate areas like around the eyes and upper lips.
At Lieberman & Parikh Facial Plastic Surgery, our Refresh laser is an erbium Yag 2940, a state-of-the-art laser which was designed to treat the following:
- Superficial wrinkles around the mouth, eyes, cheeks and crow’s feet
- Rough skin
- Enlarged pores
- Some scars
- Dark spots, including melasma
What You Need To Know About Our Revive Laser
Who is a Good Candidate for Revive (Co2)?
Revive Carbon dioxide (CO2) laser resurfacing is the gold-standard in laser skin resurfacing and can produce dramatic results that take up to 20 years off the way a patient looks.* Anyone with a lighter skin tone, looking to improve deep wrinkles or stubborn blemishes across the entire face should consider the Revive Co2 laser. However,our Revive laser is not appropriate for people with darker skin tones because there is a 15% chance of permanent skin lightening. For people with lighter skin tones, the Revive Co2 laser produces dramatic results by treating*:
- Deep lines & wrinkles
- Sunspots and age spots
- Skin texture irregularities
- Acne and scars
- Photodamaged skin
- Enlarged pores
How Do Laser Skin Resurfacing Treatments Compare to Chemical Peels and Micro-Penning?
Due to their strength, laser procedures usually more dramatic results than both chemical peels and micro-penning. However, with laser skin resurfacing, there is usually more downtime than with the other two treatments.
Are Laser Skin Resurfacing Treatments Painful?
Pain tolerance varies from person to person, and the level of discomfort will vary by the location and depth of the treatment. On a scale from 0-10, (0 being no pain, and 10 being unbearable pain), our patients usually report a 3-5 level of discomfort. For the Refresh laser, a topical anesthesia will be applied 30 minutes prior to treatment, and for the Revive, Drs. Lieberman and Parikh will offer patients a local nerve block though an oral analgesic.
Refresh & Revive Laser Skin Resurfacing – Post-Treatment & Recovery Process
What Is The Recovery After Refresh and Revive Laser Treatments?
For approximately 3-5 days after a Refresh treatment, and anywhere from 10 days to four weeks after Revive treatment, your skin will probably look like it has been severely sunburned. During this time, your skin may feel raw and have some oozing drainage. Some patients report a tingling, burning or itching sensation that comes and goes throughout the day.
Once your skin has begun to heal, the outer layers will peel off and new, healthy skin will grow in its place. Your skin might remain pink or red for up to two months after the treatment, but most patients are able to cover-up the discoloration with makeup.
Our staff will instruct you on how to care for your skin during the healing process, and you may use ice or pain medication to alleviate any discomfort, but it is critical to stay out of the sun as too much sun could cause permanent, irregular discoloration.
Are There Any Risks Associated with Laser Skin Resurfacing Treatments?
There are minor risks associated with laser skin resurfacing treatments, but negative side-effects are very rare, especially in our office where our practitioners are highly trained. Possible side-effects can include scarring, infection, abnormal healing and allergic reactions, all of which our staff will discuss with you prior to your appointment.
Also, we generally recommend that people with darker skin tones do not get a Revive Co2 laser skin resurfacing treatment because the strength of the laser might cause permanent skin lightening.
Pre-Procedure Prep for Our Refresh and Revive Laser Treatments
Before any laser treatment, you will have a consultation with either Dr. Lieberman or Parikh, and before any treatment, our staff will provide you with personalized and detailed instructions on how to prepare. Below, you will see the general guidelines:
4-6 weeks prior:
- Begin using a retinol, vitamin A cream, alpha-hydroxy acid or a hydroquinone cream.
2 weeks prior:
- Stop using the retinol, vitamin A cream, alpha-hydroxy acid or a hydroquinone cream.
- Stop using aspirin (if medically possible). Tylenol (acetaminophen) is fine.
- To avoid bruising, stop taking vitamin E, St. John’s Wort, ginkgo biloba, evening primrose, garlic, feverfew, and ginseng to avoid bruising. Tylenol (acetaminophen) is fine.
2 days prior:
- Do not use medications that cause photosensitivity such as doxycycline or minocycline.
- Stop taking ibuprofen and drinking alcohol.
- Hydrate as much as possible. The laser is attracted to the water in your cells so your results will be better if you are well hydrated.
- If you are prone to cold sores, begin an antiviral and continue for 3-5 days after treatment.
Post-Procedure for Lasers Skin Resurfacing Treatments
After your Refresh or Revive laser treatment, we recommend the following:
- Get lots of rest with your head and shoulders elevated to help minimize the swelling that may occur around the eyes and cheeks.
- Apply Aquaphor to the area immediately after treatment but then keep the area dry so the peeling with begin sooner.
- Avoid activities that can cause flushing for two weeks after treatment.
- Avoid aggressive facial treatments, such as microdermabrasion and chemical peels, for 4 weeks post treatment and avoid topical products that may cause irritation for 6 weeks following your treatment.
- Be aware that acne lesions or milia (white-colored tiny keratin plugs) can occur up to a month after treatment.
- Contact our office if you develop acne or milia or if blistering, crusting, or scabbing develops. We will most likely recommend a thin layer of antibiotic ointment (such as bacitracin) for you to use twice a day until the skin heals. Do not pick or attempt to remove scabs that form following your treatment, as this may cause infection or scarring.