Treatment of Atrophic Scars With Fractionated CO2 Laser Facilitating Delivery of Topically Applied Poly-L-lactic Acid

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Atrophic scars represent a loss of collagen and a challenging reconstructive dilemma with disappointing traditional treatments.


To study the safety and efficacy of the treatment of atrophic scars using an ablative fractionated CO2 laser and topical poly-L-lactic acid (PLLA) immediately after to improve atrophic scars.


This was an uncontrolled, institutional review board-approved, prospective study evaluating the treatment of atrophic scars. Four blinded dermatologists evaluated a total of 20 photographs taken at baseline and 3 months after the laser and PLLA treatments using the Modified Manchester Scar Scale. Four criteria were evaluated: (1) overall improvement, (2) improvement in scar atrophy, (3) improvement in scar color/dyschromia mismatch, and (4) improvement in scar contour.


All 4 observers accurately identified 76 of the 80 “before” and “after” photographs. Therefore, the blinded evaluating physicians agreed that at the 3-month follow-up visit, 95% of the scars had improved. Each criterion demonstrated an average improvement of at least 33%.


The combination of using an ablative fractional CO2 laser and PLLA in the treatment of atrophic scars has a synergistic effect on their inherent properties in up-regulating new collagen synthesis to improve atrophic scars.

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