A cosmetic skin rejuvenating laser treatment, Fraxel repair treats many different signs of aging such as fine lines, sun spots, scars, uneven texture, and loss of firmness. While the benefits of the lasers are many, the Fraxel procedure carries risks and can cause adverse side effects when performed incorrectly.
The most aggressive of all fractionated laser treatments, Fraxel repair combines the use of carbon dioxide (CO2) lasers with fractional technology to rejuvenate the skin in a single treatment. An ablative procedure, the treatment is fairly painful and involves downtime lasting at least a week.
Although a safe and beneficial procedure when done right, the laser can cause damaging effects when performed incorrectly by an inexperienced individual. According to Dermalnetwork, a comprehensive online resource for cosmetic dermatology, the possible side effects of the laser include redness, swelling, flaking, oozing in the treated areas, acne, pigment changes, scarring, and delayed healing.
Fraxel repair is an expensive procedure. Some individuals may need more than a single treatment to maintain the benefits of the Fraxel treatment over time.
The American Society of Plastic Surgeons says that patients with darker skin tones have a higher risk of developing hyperpigmentation from all laser resurfacing treatments. It recommends the use of a bleaching agent after the procedure to avoid the problem.