Acne scars are permanent and the truth is that no single treatment is able to cure them. However, through a combination of treatments, we are able to treat the scars and improve the appearance of your skin. The type of treatment(s) required will depend on your scar type, your skin type and the severity of the scarring.
Acne Scars exists in 2 forms:
- Depressed Acne Scar (indented): when there is a loss of tissue and tethering of the scar on the skin surface results in an indentation on the surface of the skin
- Hypertrophic Acne Scar (raised): skin stimulates collagen during the healing phase of acne but over-stimulation of collagen will result in raised scars.
The diagram below illustrates the different types of acne scars.
It is not uncommon to experience a combination of different Acne Scars so it is best to consult with an experienced medical professional to get better insights, understand the type of Acne Scars and get a suitable Acne Scar Removal programme tailored to you.
At M-Aesthetic Clinic, we specialise in removing Acne Scars and we have the full range of acne scar removal treatments to treat all kinds of acne scars; raised and red, flat, pigmented or depressed.
This is a method whereby the scar tissue is manually released by using a needle to loosen the scar tissue beneath the skin.
This method is sometimes essential in treating certain scar types and is commonly used in combination with other treatment modalities to optimise results.
The most appropriate combination will be advised by Dr Ho Rui Ming.
Subscision may look simple but it is a manual method that really requires good technique. When done correctly, it can yield effective results so be sure to seek a medical professional for this treatment.
First, an anaesthetic is administered to the area that is to be treated to ensure maximum comfort. Then, the scar is released by loosening the scar tissue beneath it via a needle.
The process takes around 30 mins, is comfortable and there is minimal downtime.
Best for: Dense, thick Scars that are tethered down.
2. TCA CROSS
This is a technique where by very high concentration TCA acid is carefully applied to each individual acne scars to “fill” up the depression and make the acne scar less depressed. This technique is especially useful in Ice-pick scars and some Box-car scars.
The concentration of acid used in this technique is very high and as such should only be administered by an experienced medical professional to ensure maximum safety.
What to expect after the TCA CROSS Technique?
- You need to cleanse the skin gently and apply post peel creams frequently.
- Do not scratch , pick or peel off the scabs.
- Try to avoid direct sun exposure.
- Use sunscreen of at least SPF 30.
- Do not use other acid-based products until skin has recovered.
Best for: Ice pick and small Box Scars.
3. Fractional Laser Resurfacing
Fractional Laser Resurfacing for acne scars break up scar tissue and stimulates collagen formation. This treatment encourages new, healthy skin cells to regenerate and replace the scar tissue.
This reduces the appearance of scars and smoothens the skin. In the right hands, up to 80-90% improvement in scars can be achieved.
A well-known fractional laser resurfacing treatment is the Advanced eCO2 Fractional Laser.
The eCO2 Fractional Laser is the premier fractional ablative laser that delivers exceptional, effective results in treating uneven skin texture and depressed acne scars. In contrast to traditional resurfacing lasers, the Fractional eCO2 has revolutionised the treatment of these conditions by reducing downtime to a minimum.
The eCO2 features the patented Controlled Chaos Technology (CCT™) to create Micro-Ablative Columns (MACs) that allows the tissue to maximize heat dissipation between shots.
How is the eCO2 Laser treatment performed?
Numbing cream will first be applied before the procedure to ensure maximum comfort during the procedure. The procedure itself is quick and takes about 15 mins.
It works by destroying scar tissue and stimulating the skin underneath to regenerate. The energy heats up the dermis layer and stimulate our body’s natural repair process to rebuild lost collagen in the skin. Concurrently, fractional technology leaves the healthy tissues intact between the laser beams to accelerate tissue healing.
For Acne Scars, the eCO2 Laser breaks up the scar tissue and stimulates collagen to smoothen these scars out.
Most patients will find this procedure highly tolerable.
What to expect after the laser treatment?
- Do not scratch, pick or peel off the scabs.
- Try to avoid direct sun exposure.
- Use sunscreen of at least SPF30.
- Do not use harsh products till your skin has recovered.
Best for: Recommended to treat depressed acne scars such as Boxcar Scars and Rolling Scars, post-treated Ice Pick Scars, and even Hypertrophic / Keloid Scars.
For wider-based depressed acne scars, fillers can be used to “fill in” the acne scars and even out the skin.
The most popular Dermal Fillers for acne scars are Juvederm.
This treatment is able to improve the appearance of the scars, make the depressed areas less obvious, plus it also improves the texture of your skin. They’re injected under the surface of the skin to help plump up and smooth out depressed scars.
These fillers last up to 1 year+.
The post-procedure downtime is limited to no downtime and the results are immediate.
This scar filler treatment also helps to stimulate collagen production. This helps to lessen the appearance of the scars eventually and may result in fewer and less aggressive treatments.
Most fillers last between 9 to 12 months+ before they need to be redone.
Best for: Wider boxcar or rolling scars.
5. Microneedle Radiofrequency
For deeper / rolling scars, a more intense Micro-Needle Radiofrequency treatment can be used. This method of treatment is unique and highly effective for stubborn/ deep acne scars.
Gold-plated ultra-fine needles first smoothly penetrate the deep acne scars before emitting high Radiofrequency energy to break up the scar tissue and stimulate collagen.
It is a great treatment for deep acne scars that requires deeper penetration of energy and a more intense approach.
Despite being more intensive, downtime is actually still kept to a MINIMAL.
It’s a safe treatment that works for all skin types.
What to expect after the Microneedle Radiofrequency?
- Minor side effects which include redness, bruising, and inflammation. However, these should clear up within a few days.
- Try to avoid direct sun exposure.
- Avoid sun exposure.
- Avoid alcohol-based and acid-based skin products during the recovery period.
Best for: Deeper depressed acne scars.
Acne scars are permanent structural damage to the skin and without treatment will continue to remain. Skincare products, unfortunately, DO Not heal such Acne Scars and as such medical treatments are still preferred if you want the best results.
With the right expertise and techniques, improvement in Acne Scars of up to 80% is now achievable.
Dr Ho Rui Ming believes that every Acne Scar is unique and knows that different techniques and methods will be required for different types of Acne Scars so as to yield the highest achievable results. He will take factors such as your lifestyle habits, occupation, type of skin and severity of Acne Scars into consideration, and customise a plan for you to remove your Acne Scars.
Should you be facing similar issues, don’t hesitate and speak to us now.