Social Accounts Sprite

CO2 Laser Skin Resurfacing


CO2 laser skin resurfacing is performed using a carbon dioxide ablative laser to remove the top layers of skin and reduce wrinkles, scars, and other blemishes. The procedure takes about 45 minutes and is performed using topical anesthesia. The recovery time is generally seven to 10 days, but can be less if the CO2 laser is combined with Fraxel laser skin rejuvenation.

View transcript

Dr. Alvarez: This video will discuss details about CO2 Laser Skin Resurfacing. CO2 skin tightening is the enhancement of the changes related to aging and sun damage to the skin. Patients who are good candidates for the procedure are women or men who want to correct the usual changes including wrinkles, skin laxity, and pigment. The laser targets water, allowing for the stimulation of lost collagen and elastin. The procedure is simple. The laser makes micro-perforations to the skin, stimulating their regenerative properties. The endpoint is a healthier look to the skin. The CO2 laser works more superficially and delivers a greater degree of energy. The recovery is longer, but only one or three minutes is needed in the majority of cases. The procedure is done in the office under topical anesthesia. It usually takes an average of 45 minutes. The recovery time is 7 to 10 days. When I combine the Fraxel with the CO2 laser, the recovery time is less, compared to a CO2 laser alone. It usually gets reduced to around four to five days. Some important considerations for the procedure are to avoid recent tanning or future exposure to sun or tanning beds. Cold sores may reactivate with the laser treatment. Please make us aware if you have suffered from this before. We will need to give you preventive medication to avoid this complication during the healing process. Other considerations include the use of Accutane within the prior year, pregnancy, active lupus disease to the skin, and skin cancer. Some frequently asked questions are, "Would I have blisters with either procedure?" No. The micro-perforations allow for the escape of fluid preventing the formation of blisters. "Would I have bleeding with the procedure?" Some patients may develop pinpoint bleeding, especially if they have small capillary vessels on the area of treatment. "When will the swelling go away?" It usually takes five days with CO2 laser treatment. "When can I use make-up?" One week should be okay for light concealer, two weeks for regular make-up. "How does it feel the first day after the procedure?" Tina, our clinical coordinator, will tell you the details. Okay. Today, we're talking with Tina, our clinical coordinator, and she had CO2 laser yesterday. So today's her first day after the procedure. So, Tina, how was the procedure yesterday? How painful was it? Tina: I had a topical anesthetic and it was not any more painful than the Fraxel, which I had as well before. You can feel it a little bit, but it's not anything that you can't stand. It's just a mild burning feeling and right now is almost 24 hours after my procedure. And through the night, I had some swelling and just a tiny little bit of blood. Today, I feel a little bit of crusting on my skin, but no pain at all. I didn't feel any pain last night either. Probably two hours after the procedure, I could feel a slight burning, but I didn't have to take any kind of pain medication, just some cold compresses and by evening, I had no pain at all. Dr. Alvarez: Perfect. Do you have any strange sensations, there was something that bothered you, maybe the bleeding, or something like that? Tina: No, there's a lot of fluid. My eyes are very swollen. My face is probably twice the size it normally is, very red. To touch it, it feels sensitive, but there's no pain or itching or burning right now. Dr. Alvarez: Very good. Tina: Feels a little bit dry. Dr. Alvarez: Perfect. So what are you doing to try to counteract all of these things? Tina: I'm putting a vinegar soak on, my own acidic acid soak of water and just white vinegar probably two to three times a day, and then I follow it with Aquaphor, which is a very moisturizing ointment. Dr. Alvarez: Perfect. So we'll continue this report with Tina's progress on how her CO2 did for her face. Now, let's reviews some consultations that have undergone this procedure. This patient was concerned about the pigmentation and damage of the skin to her neck and the décolleté. Please appreciate the significant improvement in the pigmentation and quality of the skin. This patient was concerned about the fine and deep wrinkles to the mouth and cheeks. Please appreciate the significant improvement to the perioral area. This patient was concerned about the fine and deep wrinkles to the skin of the face. Please appreciate the significant improvement to the skin and wrinkles. This patient was concerned about the fine and deep wrinkles to the skin of the face. Please appreciate the significant improvement to the skin and wrinkles. Thank you for considering us for your procedure and welcome to our practice. Please contact us by phone, email, or through our website.

Contact Us

"Not only is Dr. Julio great but so is his staff and office environment! I have recommended family members and friends to him for various procedures and all agree!"

Real Patient


Warrendale Office

101 Fowler Rd
Ste G
Warrendale, PA 15086

Open Today 8:00am - 4:00pm

Monroeville Office

4318 Northern Pike
Monroeville, PA 15146

Closed Today


Contact Us