Scar fading is a new procedure that permanently removes or diminishes scars and stretch marks by progressively breaking down, scraping and shedding off the top layers of the scar tissue while simultaneously stimulating the tissue below the scar to trigger the natural healing processes. These healing processes produce new skin that eventually replaces the scar. Each session of the procedure can safely remove as much as 0.5 mm of the scar tissue. Multiple sessions are required for deeper scars.
The scar breakdown is done in a a very targeted way by a special computer-controlled needle, vibrating at a very high frequency. Special blend of ointments is added to facilitate the process and promote the healing. Surgical grade topical anesthesia is applied to make the procedure painless.
Typically, the results are immediate and progressive, with optimal improvement usually visible in 2 to 3 months. Four to six treatments, spaced 4 weeks apart, are recommended to achieve best results. Based on our extensive experience with this procedure, we have developed a very aggressive application regimen that permit maximum benefits in the shortest time.
Comparison of Scar Fading and Fraxel Laser Procedures
The modality of action is very similar between the Scar Fading and Fraxel Laser procedures. Both stimulate new collagen production in deep tissue layers, which leads to skin resurfacing and rejuvenation. However, Fraxel laser uses light to induce the stimulation. Most of the laser light is absorbed in the surface layers of the skin and only a small fraction penetrates into and is absorbed by the targeted tissue. The depth of the penetration is dependent on the individual skin properties, which may vary greatly depending on the age and ethnicity. As a result, the stimulation may extend too far or not far enough into the skin. It also creates the risk of scarring at the skin surface and limits the amount of stimulation that the laser can safely deliver to the dermal layer. Some Fraxel laser treatments are not recommended for darker skin types.
What may make Scar Fading both safer and more effective is its more precise, targeted delivery of stimulation. Exactly the same level of injury is caused at the skin surface as at the dermis level. Unlike lasers, the depth to which the stimulation is delivered is independent of the skin properties, age or ethnicity and is controlled precisely by the needle length. "Unlike with ablative lasers, there's no risk of scarring," says Matthias Aust, MD, a plastic surgeon in Hannover, Germany. "And in addition to stimulating fibroblasts to make collagen and elastin, needling also releases growth factors, which nonablative lasers don't do." As a result, Scar fading may allow greater regenerative skin stimulation, with much shorter recovery time and lower risk of procedure-induced scarring, than the laser treatments. It has been reported that skin needling has an additional benefit: absorption of creams and medications placed on the skin surface prior to the procedure is greatly enhanced by the tiny punctures caused by the procedure, thereby greatly increasing their effectiveness.
Potential side effects of both, Scar fading and Fraxel laser is temporary or permanent hyperpigmentation (darkening) of the treated area. Application of hydroquinone helps minimize that risk.
Cost Comparisons of Scar Fading and Fraxel Laser Procedures
Equipment used in Fraxel Laser procedures is extremely expensive and is aggressively promoted by its manufacturers. As a result, Fraxel laser treatments are much more expensive than the Scar Fading. A typical cost for a single treatment ranges from $750 to $1,500 (Source: www.Fraxel.com ). A recommended series of 5 treatments costs around $5,000. By comparison, Scar Fading is quite cheap: a single treatment is $300 and a series of 5 treatments are $1,500, - less than one fifth of the cost of Fraxel laser treatments.