JOURNAL ARTICLE

Improvement of atrophic acne scars with a 1,320 nm Nd:YAG laser: retrospective study

Supriya G Bellew, Catherine Lee, Margaret A Weiss, Robert A Weiss
Dermatologic Surgery: Official Publication for American Society for Dermatologic Surgery [et Al.] 2005, 31 (9): 1218-21; discussion 1222
16176774

BACKGROUND: Facial acne scarring has been treated with multiple methods with varying degrees of improvement. Although the 1,320 nm neodymium:yttrium-aluminum-garnet (Nd:YAG) laser has been widely used to improve photoaging, studies analyzing its effects on atrophic acne scarring are limited.

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the efficacy of a dynamic cryogen-cooled 1,320 nm Nd:YAG laser for the treatment of atrophic facial acne scars in a larger cohort of patients with long-term follow-up.

METHODS: Twenty-nine patients (skin phototypes I-IV) with facial acne scarring received a mean of 5.5 (range 2-17) treatments with a 1,320 nm Nd:YAG laser. Objective physician assessment scores of improvement were determined by side-by-side comparison of preoperative and postoperative photographs at a range of 1 to 27 months (mean 10.4 months) postoperatively. Subjective patient self-assessment scores of improvement were also obtained.

RESULTS: Acne scarring was significantly improved by both physician and patient assessment scores. Mean improvement was 2.8 (p < .05) on a 0- to 4-point scale by physician assessment and 5.4 (p < .05) on a 0- to 10-point scale by patient assessment. No significant complications were observed.

CONCLUSIONS: Nonablative laser skin resurfacing with a 1,320 nm Nd:YAG laser can effectively improve the appearance of facial acne scars with minimal adverse sequelae.

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