Fractional carbon dioxide laser for the treatment of facial atrophic acne scars: prospective clinical trial with short and long-term evaluation

ELÇİN G., Yalici-Armagan B.

LASERS IN MEDICAL SCIENCE, vol.32, no.9, pp.2047-2054, 2017 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 32 Issue: 9
  • Publication Date: 2017
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s10103-017-2322-7
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.2047-2054
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


The aim of this study was to evaluate the efficacy and safety of fractional carbon dioxide laser for the treatment of acne scars. Thirty-one participants, 15 female and 16 male, whose mean age was 34.84 +/- 10.94 years, were included in this prospective study. The study took place between 2012 and 2016. Participants were evaluated with the "ECCA Grading Scale" before the first session, 3 months (short-term evaluation) and 3 years after the last session (long-term evaluation). Participants received two or three treatment sessions at 4-week intervals, with a 10,600 nm fractional carbon dioxide laser with pulse energies ranging between 100 and 160 mJ, 120 spot type, 75-100 spot/cm(2) density, and 30 W power. Self-assessments by the participants were done 3 months and 3 years after the last session. The mean ECCA score was 107.90 +/- 39.38 before the first session, and 82.17 +/- 36.23 at the time of short-term evaluation (p = 0.000). The grade of improvement at the short-term evaluation was as follows: no improvement, mild, moderate, and significant improvement for 7 (22.6%), 11 (35.5%), 9 (29%), and 4 (12.9%) of the participants, respectively. Regarding self-assessments, 80.6 and 61.3% of the participants rated themselves as having at least mild improvement at the short-term and the long-term follow-up periods, respectively. The results of this study suggest that fractional carbon dioxide laser is an efficient treatment option for acne scars. Furthermore, self-assessment results show that more than half of the participants still experience at least mild improvement at the end of 3 years.