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Treatment of striae distensae using an ablative 10,600-nm carbon dioxide fractional laser: a retrospective review of 27 participants.

BACKGROUND: Late-stage striae distensae is a type of scar characterized by a loss of collagen and elastic fibers in the dermis. Ablative 10,600-nm carbon dioxide fractional laser systems (CO₂ FS) have been used successfully for the treatment of various types of scars.

OBJECTIVE: To investigate the therapeutic efficacy of using CO₂ FS for the treatment of striae distensae.

METHODS: Twenty-seven women with striae distensae were treated in a single session with a CO₂ FS. Deep FX mode with a pulse energy of 10 mJ and a density of 2 (percent coverage of 10%) was used. Clinical improvement was assessed by comparing pre- and post-treatment clinical photographs and participant satisfaction rates.

RESULTS: The evaluation of clinical results 3 months after treatment showed that two of the 27 participants (7.4%) had grade clinical 4 improvement, 14 (51.9%) had grade 3 improvement, nine (33.3%) had grade 2 improvement, and two (7.4%) had grade 1 improvement. None of the participants showed worsening of their striae distensae. Mean clinical improvement score was 2.6. Surveys evaluating overall participant satisfaction administered after the treatment was completed showed that six of the 27 participants (22.2%) were very satisfied, 14 (51.9%) were satisfied, five (18.1%) were slightly satisfied, and two (7.4%) were unsatisfied.

CONCLUSION: Our observations demonstrated that the use of CO₂ FS can have a positive therapeutic effect on late-stage striae distensae.

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