This woman didn’t like the fine lines and shadows around her mouth. She underwent fractionated carbon dioxide (CO2) laser with Dr. Garrett Griffin, treating the skin around her mouth. The term fractionated means that the laser only treats some of the skin surface, leaving some intact skin which decreases the risk of infection, and speeds recovery. The surgeon controls how aggressive to be with the laser to achieve the desired effect. CO2 laser generally causes 2 weeks of pretty significant redness after which the patient can wear makeup. Mild redness may last up to 2 months.
Although CO2 laser can be done any time of year, many patients elect to undergo this therapy in the fall and winter in order to limit sun exposure, which is important in the weeks right after treatment. CO2 laser can be used to significantly improve fine lines and even out pigmentation on any part of the face, but must be used cautiously on the neck. While this therapy can have a significant downtime, it is the most effective and most long lasting way to reduce fine lines, especially around the mouth and eyes. It is commonly performed at the same time as a facelift.