ABSTRACT: Fractionated technology has revolutionized laser therapy. With the success of initial devices, several fractionated lasers have appeared on the market. Claims of superiority have made device choice difficult for physicians and patients.
Twelve subjects were treated with fractionated ablative lasers (10,600-nm carbon dioxide and 2790-nm yttrium scandium gallium garnet) in this institutional review board-approved trial. Each face was divided into four quadrants, and each quadrant was randomly treated using one of four lasers. Clinical experience was used to optimize settings. Two patients submitted biopsies from each quadrant immediately after treatment. Patients and blinded investigators assessed pain during treatment and post-treatment improvement in photoaging (measured by rhytides, lentigines, texture, and pore size) using a five-point scale.
All devices resulted in statistical improvement in photoaging in all patients, but no device was statistically significantly superior. No statistically significant difference was found in pain scores. All patients reported satisfaction 1 month after treatment. Three patients experienced adverse reactions. Histologically, there were no statistically significant differences between devices.
Fractionated ablative lasers reliably result in improvement in photoaging. Despite marketing claims, no statistically significant differences were found in outcomes, pain during treatment, or histologic findings. Even with experienced users, significant adverse reactions are possible.
Dermatologic Surgery 07/2012; 38(9):1477-89. · 1.80 Impact Factor