Hi there… I am a biracial female who read about skin resurfacing on your website. There was one comment that said people with darker skin should not have this procedure done. I have scars on my face from when I fell as a kid. I would very much like them minimized somehow if possible. What options do I have as a person with some African-American ancestry. I know that AA’s tend to scar more sometimes and pigmentation can be an issue. I have also read that sometimes special machines should be used on darker skin (ex. laser hair removal) or pigmentation can problematic. Are there special machines used for darker pigmented people?
Thanks so much!!!
I am glad you are being careful. There are some lasers such as the 1064nm YAG laser used for hair removal that have longer wavelengths and avoid damaging the melanocytes (skin pigment producing cells).
I have seen some doctors use Fraxel laser or light peels such as Obagi’s blue peel on african americans or individuals with darker skin. I do not recommend that personally because it is too risky however the ultimate risk taking choice is up to the patient and if the problem is severe enough then the benefit may outweigh the risk.
In my opinion if the scar is very disfiguring then primary excision and an aethetic re-closure achieving a better scar is the best option and I have done this plenty of times in patients with very dark skin with excellent results.
If you choose to go with the resurfacing route then you should always do a “”test patch”” first to see how your skin reacts to the procedure before actually doing a large noticeable skin surface area.