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Acne Scarring


About 60 million people suffer from acne around the world. While for many, it's an embarrassing part of the teenage years, and for others, acne is so severe that it causes scarring that remains well into adulthood. This happens when acne penetrates deep into the skin, damaging both the skin and underlying tissue. As the body creates collagen, the acne will begin to heal. If too much or too little collagen is created, it could cause an acne scar. At The Kaplan Center for Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery, we know that acne scarring can be just as troublesome as acne itself and can lead to feelings of self-consciousness and unease. In order to successfully reduce acne scarring, we suggest a three-phase approach performed over a 6 – 12-month period. Utilizing Bellafill®, Sciton Profractional Laser, and smooth PDO threading, we can help your skin heal and strengthen, creating visually appealing results. For more information, schedule a one-on-one consultation with board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Gordon Kaplan at The Kaplan Center in Edgewater, NJ.



Bellafill with Subcision: What Is A subcision?


When treating acne scarring, we suggest Bellafill with subcision treatments. But what does "subcision" mean? This is an in-office procedure at our Edgewater, NJ office where we insert a fine needle under the skin to release tethered fibrotic strands that hinder the skin from rising, causing the divots in the skin that we often see with acne scarring. This procedure also stimulates collagen growth, which will ignite the body's healing response to help clear up scarring. Results can usually begin to be seen after about a week but will continue over the next few weeks to months following the collagen production. Dr. Kaplan typically suggests three treatments at The Kaplan Center for Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery.


At The Kaplan Center, Dr. Kaplan uses Bellafill to correct and reduce moderate to severe acne scarring. Bellafill is a long-lasting dermal filler that adds volume to the depressions of acne scars to bring the scars up to the level of your skin thusly reducing the visibility of the scarring. This filler, made of bovine collagen and PMMA (polymethylmethacrylate) beads, stimulates collagen production after about four weeks so it is not only a long-lasting filler but prompts the body's natural healing process. Combined with subcision, this is an incredibly effective process and can treat acne scars in as little as one visit.


During your acne scarring treatment, our team will work with you to help you meet your desired goals. We'll begin by washing your face to cleanse it of any oils, lotions, or debris. We will use a topical numbing cream to help you stay comfortable during your procedure. From there, we will insert a special type of needle called a "nokor" under the skin. Dr. Kaplan will then move the needle back and forth to displace the scar within the dermis. This process will be repeated as necessary to displace the scar and promote collagen growth. From there, Bellafill will be injected into each scar to help lift the skin. In time, your skin will absorb the bovine collagen in the Bellafill filler to produce its own collagen. While multiple sessions may be needed to get your desired appearance, these results can last up to five years.


After your acne scarring treatment at The Kaplan Center, Dr. Kaplan will send you home to rest and recover. You may expect some swelling, bruising, and even bruising immediately after your procedure, but this is perfectly normal and will subside. Swelling may last somewhere between 3 – 10 days. We will give you specific washing instructions, but generally, you'll just need to very gently cleanse your skin using a gentle cleanser. If you need suggestions for a gentle cleanser, someone from our team can help you. We'll then have you apply a healing ointment to promote healthy healing. It's important to wear sunscreen if you plan on going outside to protect your healing skin from UV rays. Follow-up sessions will be scheduled for about 4 – 6 weeks after your first treatment.


During a one-on-one consultation with plastic surgeon Dr. Gordon Kaplan, he'll review your skin and get to know you and your overall skin goals. Depending on the level of your scarring, he will suggest either one or multiple sessions for your acne scarring treatment. At this time, he can answer any questions you have about the procedure, as well as pricing and more. You can rest assured that our kind, considerate, and talented team will take great care of you! At The Kaplan Center for Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery, we are here for you and aim to help you feel comfortable in your skin!


Acne Scar Treatment: Profractional™ Laser Resurfacing


At The Kaplan Center for Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery, plastic surgeon Dr. Gordon Kaplan uses the Sciton Profractional laser for an effective acne scarring treatment. The Profractional laser by Sciton uses energy to create micro-injuries in the skin to stimulate collagen production. We prefer this laser for acne scarring treatment because it ablates narrow-diameter channels into the skin rather than full-field resurfacing, which removes the entire surface area. The Profractional laser leaves the surrounding healthy tissues intact, thusly reducing the treatment area. The combination of deep healing fractional therapy and collagen production provides incredible results, and the process of leaving the surrounding skin intact allows for shorter downtime.


The Profractional laser is unique for acne treatment because it targets the dermis and epidermis. Dr. Kaplan performs this laser therapy as a targeted approach so the healthy tissue surrounding the treatment area will boost the healing of the damaged area. As the laser emits high pulses of laser light, it will be converted into heat energy that will remove the top layer of the skin, generating collagen growth. This natural-occurring collagen will plump up the skin and smooth out acne scarring irregularities.


At The Kaplan Center for Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery, we use the Sciton Profractional laser as an effective acne scarring treatment. Before beginning this 45 – 60-minute procedure, we'll clean your skin and apply a topical numbing cream to help you stay comfortable. From there, Dr. Kaplan will pass the laser device over the treatment areas, followed by a cooling device that will keep you comfortable. After your appointment, your skin will likely feel very warm and look as if it's sunburned. You may have some pinpoint bleeding, but this is normal and not cause for alarm. Dr. Kaplan or a member of his Edgewater, NJ team will provide you with instructions on the best way to promote healthy healing and cleansing at home.


After your Sciton Profractional laser treatment at The Kaplan Center for Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery, you can expect your treatment area(s) to be red, swollen, itchy, and warm. This is normal following your treatment and will go away in time. You can expect about 7 – 10 days to heal properly, during which time you may have some increased areas of hyperpigmentation — don't worry, this is normal and will disappear in a few days. We highly suggest you avoid direct sun exposure or tanning beds until you are fully healed. Whenever you go out, we suggest applying sunscreen as your skin will be pretty sensitive. We will also schedule follow-up appointments, as it often takes about three or more treatments to see your best results.


During your one-on-one consultation with plastic surgeon Dr. Gordon Kaplan at his Edgewater, NJ office, he will take time to listen to your concerns and desires, and will review your skin and acne scarring. Based on your skin, as well as your desired results, Dr. Kaplan will suggest a treatment plan, one of which could be laser treatment with the Sciton Profractional laser. This noninvasive procedure is a great way to reduce acne scarring for clear, smooth, beautiful skin. Once your treatment plan has been created, we can get your appointments scheduled and answer any questions you have about the procedure or cost.



Acne Meshing with Smooth PDO Threads


Plastic surgeon Dr. Gordon Kaplan offers acne meshing with smooth PDO threads at The Kaplan Center for Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery in Edgewater, NJ and New York City. Designed to help men and women reduce acne scarring, smooth PDO threads are absorbable polydioxanone threads are a nonsurgical procedure that rejuvenates the skin and minimizes skin irregularities. These thin, hair-like threads are delicately placed under the skin to stimulate blood flow and collagen, elastin, and hyaluronic acid production. These natural substances work together to help the skin remain firm, smooth, and youthful-looking.


Collagen is an important component in treating acne scarring, which is what makes PDO threading so effective. As the threads create micro-injuries, the body's natural healing process begins, which will help to revitalize the skin. In addition to that, as the threads are inserted into the skin and around the scarring, it helps to smooth the skin and stimulate collagen production. From there, the skin will begin to naturally heal and reduce acne scarring.


Before we begin your acne scarring treatment, we will cleanse your skin and apply a topical numbing cream to ensure you remain comfortable. We'll then mark where we're going to insert the PDO threads into your skin using a crosshatch pattern. Over the next 30 – 45 minutes, Dr. Kaplan will insert the threads underneath the skin and into the dermis. The needle is removed and the thread is released into the skin. After about 3 – 4 weeks, collagen will begin to form and the skin will start repairing itself. You will not feel or see the PDO threads once they've been inserted into your skin.


After your acne scarring treatment with smooth PDO threads, you can get right back to your daily routine as little to no downtime is required. You can expect some swelling, bruising, bleeding, and tenderness or feel mild pain, but this will disappear in time. After about a month, collagen will begin to form and peak about six months after your appointment. You can expect your results to last about 1 – 2 years.