Is laser skin resurfacing "surgery"?
Although there is no scalpel, laser resurfacing does break the surface of the skin. Any treatment that removes a superficial skin layer does count as "invasive". Although there is marketing trend in the cosmetic procedures that emphasizes (capitalizes) on the term "non-invasive", this term is almost synonymous with non-effective.
Laser Skin Resurfacing and Anesthesia
Although I treat partial facial areas under local anesthetic alone, with the patient awake, my preference is to use a brief intravenous sedation. If the full face is to be treated, I recommend that the patient is asleep. This way the patient is most comfortable. Having our own surgery center on-site makes this convenient.
Lubricated metal eye shields offer complete eye protection in surgery.
How long does the procedure last?
The procedure does not take long, usually about 15 minutes. It is almost embarrassingly easy to do and to teach. Almost too easy. The art of resurfacing is in knowing how many passes to use on the different areas of the face, which have varying skin thicknesses, and how to vary energy levels and passes with the laser in patients of different ages and complexions. This comes with experience, which is why inexperienced operators or those that do not have a medical background in skin care are at a disadvantage.
Full Facial Laser Treatment Advantages
When we first performed laser treatments, we often did "spot treatments." Today, it is much more common to treat all of the face. We can go deeper where necessary, usually around the mouth where there are deeper lines, and more superficially over less wrinkled areas such as the cheeks. This way, there is no need to use makeup to blend in the red areas with the untreated skin until the redness fades. All of the skin has the same glow, and all of the facial skin benefits from effective rejuvenation, not just individual sections.