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Hands, Resurfaced

We know how meaningful it is to hear the testimony of someone who has actually experienced a cosmetic procedure, so we asked one of our real patients who recently had CO2 Laser Skin Resurfacing on her hands to share about her experience. Here is what she had to say:

Life and time. They're catching up with me more quickly than I'd like! Like everyone else, I was once young and completely carefree, with the world at my feet. Over time, I took on more and more responsibilities, along with countless joys and, of course, the inevitable moments of worry or stress.

In college, I discovered the first sign of a life well-lived: a solitary gray hair. It rocked my 17-year-old world. From college to career, to marriage and babies, more signs of the passage of time showed up. Weight gain and weight loss, pregnancies, sun exposure, gravity, and natural aging... in the 30 years since I discovered that first gray hair, all these harbingers of aging have knocked on my door and left their marks on me. Badges of honor, beacons to the world that I have lived and loved.

To be honest, at forty-seven, I'm not ready for every badge of honor that comes with aging. I could do with fewer wrinkles and not quite as many freckles. That solitary gray hair was followed by more, and they're not my favorite thing. So I decided to take action.

I think the facial wrinkles and freckles are the hallmarks of time that bother me the most. The freckles were cute when I was a child; after years of sun exposure (and probably not enough sunscreen) and four pregnancies, I heard the word melasma used once in awhile and decided those freckles were no longer as "cute" on me as they once were. I heard that great advancements had been made in laser technology, and that my freckles (or melasma?) could become a thing of the past. I decided a test run was in order, and went to Meadows Surgical Arts for CO2 Laser Skin Resurfacing on my hands... and if that went well, I'd think about having it done on my face.

CO2 fractional laser skin resurfacing works by applying a series of tiny pulses of laser energy to the skin, creating microscopic holes in the skin. As these holes heal, new younger-looking skin is revealed. Fine lines are smoothed, brown spots are treated, skin irregularities are improved, and any scarring is flattened. That sounded good to me!

I made an appointment at Meadows Surgical Arts at their Buford office. I was led to the laser room (do they call it that?), and Caitlin and Nicole explained the procedure to me. It was pretty straight-forward: all I had to do was allow them to carefully position each hand in turn in the laser machine, put on safety glasses, hold still, and let the laser do its thing.

And it did! The back of each hand was treated with what looked like hundreds of tiny pulses of laser light. It reminded me of what would appear on a piece of paper in an old-fashioned typewriter when in use... letters and spaces would steadily appear along the page, until the carriage reached the end, scrolled down, and returned to the beginning point of a line. Same with the laser, row after row of little pinpricks of light. After the back of the hand was finished (2 passes with the laser on each area being treated), they repositioned my hand and then did one pass over my wrist, to feather in the newly resurfaced skin with the untreated skin.

See the little pinpricks (the tiny white spots) left by the laser, forming somewhat of a grid?

In the interest of full disclosure: yes, it was somewhat uncomfortable. But it was not unbearable. It felt like a fast-track sunburn. That's it, really... pinpricks, and then a stronger sunburned feeling that slowly spread across the back of my hand and wrist. After the procedure, to facilitate and expedite healing, Caitlin applied copious amounts of Vaseline to the backs of my hands. I took a couple of ibuprofen, and I was on my way!

After an hour, the backs of my hand/wrists were pink and sore to the touch. After two hours, the skin had started to swell slightly. The skin was stinging just like a sunburn. By the third hour post-treatment, the stinging sensation and the redness had essentially disappeared. The small bit of swelling subsided after 24 hours. Each tiny spot where the laser had done its job had scabbed over... we're talking minuscule scabs, no one would notice these unless they were looking for them (which I was). It looked like a little grid on my hands. And because of those barely-there scabs, my skin felt like sandpaper... the smooth, soft, new skin would come later, after about a week.

The results are probably more noticeable in person. My skin feels incredibly soft and smooth, and the freckles on my hands are diminished, but still there. I'm planning to go back in a few weeks for round two.

Dr. Meadows and his team are experts in applying laser technology for a younger-looking you. It can take as little as one treatment (15-30 minutes!) to enjoy fabulous results with minimal downtime.

Call Meadows Surgical Arts today to schedule your appointment for CO2 Laser Skin Resurfacing at (706) 335-3555 (Commerce) or (678) 541-0339 (Buford), or purchase online here today!


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