FAQs Fraxel® Dual

What is the Fraxel Dual procedure?

The Fraxel Dual laser is a non-ablative laser that is able to address such issues as discoloration, age spots, acne scars, fine lines and textural irregularities. Multiple treatments allow patient to obtain significant improvement without the downtime associated with laser resurfacing in the past.

For color improvement, we recommend 1-3 treatments spaced no frequently than 4 weeks apart. For fine lines, textural irregularities and acne scarring, 3-5 treatments spaced at least 4 weeks apart are recommended. Improvement in discoloration can be seen 3-4 weeks after treatment. Improvement in texture is more gradual and may be best assessed 6 months after treatment.

How is the procedure performed?

Light energy that targets water in the skin is delivered in pinpoint beams to the skin. The beams remove extremely small areas of the epidermis and superficial dermis. These small areas of injury heal with increased collagen and remodeling with minimal recuperation time. The entire face is treated in one 30 minute session. The neck, chest, arms and back of the hands may also be treated very safely and effectively.

The Fraxel Dual laser uses two energy wavelengths, 1927nm and 1550nm. Both of these are safe for all skin types. The 1550nm targets deeper skin issues such as fine lines and the 1927nm is used to address issues closer to the skin’s surface including pigmentation.

Is the Fraxel Dual laser painful?

There is some warmth and discomfort with each pulse of light. In order to make the procedure as comfortable as possible, we apply a prescription numbing cream in the office 75 minutes before your treatment.

Are there any risks or side effects of treatment?

Redness and swelling after each treatment are expected for 1-3 days. This is often followed by peeling for 5-7 days. Greater swelling occurs in the lower lids when the eye area is treated. More serious side effects are rare, but most can be avoided by proper sun avoidance before and after the procedure and following the post procedure instructions. Possible adverse effects include discoloration (lightening or darkening), prolonged redness, significant swelling and extremely rarely infection or pinpoint scarring. During the treatment, shields are worn to protect the eyes. You will be given an antiviral medication to take before treatment to prevent the activation of cold sores after treatment.

What do I need to do to maintain my results?

The best way to maintain results is to protect the skin from the sun. 1 or 2 Fraxel treatments per year are helpful in some patients to keep brown spots, and fine lines at bay. At home medical grade skincare, such as Skinceuticals CE Ferulic/Phloretin, SkinMedica Lytera 2.0 and skinbetter Even Tone Correcting Serum may also help maintain the beneficial effects of treatment.

Patient Instructions for the Fraxel Dual Laser

Pre-Fraxel Instructions:

  1. It is imperative to protect the treatment area from the sun for a full 4 weeks prior to the Fraxel. This is best accomplished by the use of SPF 30 sunscreen daily (preferably containing titanium dioxide or zinc oxide) and a hat worn during times of greater exposure to the sun’s rays. Any tan or “color” from the sun can cause side effects.
  2. Do not use glycolic acids, retinoids or lightening creams 1 week prior to the treatment.
  3. 75 minutes before your appointment, our office staff will apply topical numbing gel to the area being treated. Your physician will also give you a prescription for Valtrex which you should take prior to and after your procedure if you have a history of cold sores.
  4. To minimize potential bruising, discontinue aspirin and ibuprofen for 1 week prior to your Fraxel treatment. We advise waiting 2 weeks after any other cosmetic procedure (ie. Botox or fillers) or waxing to be treated with the Fraxel Dual.

Post-Fraxel Instructions:

  1. At your appointment, you will receive a post procedure kit with instructions and products to help your skin heal as optimally as possible. The treated area may turn red and swollen. After a couple days, depending on the condition you had treated, you may experience many small black specks on the treated area which will peel away. Some tenderness and itching may also develop. A sandpaper-like texture may also be appreciated.
  2. You may use Tylenol for discomfort after the procedure. Cool tap water compresses may be used for discomfort as well. Sleep on an extra pillow to minimize swelling around the eye area.
  3. If increasing pain, drainage, open wound, fever, or excessive swelling is present, call our office immediately 781-416-3500. A physician is on call for the practice 24 hours a day.
  4. After a gentle treatment, flaking and redness may be seen for 3-5 days. With more aggressive treatments, dark brown scale and a leathery appearance may be visible in certain areas. Swelling may last up to 5-7 days. Make-up may be worn but we recommend you wait 24 hours before applying. Particular care must be taken to avoid irritation of the skin while removing your make-up. Avoid abrasive or irritating make up removers. Glycolic, retinol, Retin A and Renova creams may be resumed after 7 days.
  5. Sun protection including SPF 30 sunscreen, and preferably a hat, are mandatory for at least 4 weeks after each treatment. To maintain your results, these sun protective measures should continue indefinitely as well as appropriate skincare.

Take the First Step – Request A Consultation

Please fill out the form on this page to request a consultation and one of our knowledgeable medical staff members at Krauss Dermatology will reach out to you promptly. You can also call our Wellesley, MA office directly to schedule – (781) 416-3500.

Krauss Dermatology serves the greater Boston area.

*Individual Results May Vary*