Ask the Expert:
Question: How can I treat ice pick acne scars?
Answer: First off, an ice pick acne scar is one that is marked by a deep pit and then sharp borders. Unfortunately, this particular type of scarring will not just go away on its own. You will need to see a local NYC-based dermatologist in order to address any ice pick acne scarring issues. At our New York dermatology office, we frequently treat patients suffering from this type of scarring with a Fractional CO2 Laser.
During the Fractional CO2 Laser resurfacing process, the laser basically pokes tiny microscopic holes in the surface of the skin. This type of treatment is what is known as ablative; meaning, the surface of the skin is disrupted by energy. This in turn stimulates increased collagen production, thus helping to fill in the pits and soften the sharp edges surrounding.
Generally speaking, ice pick acne is a very localized issue and so we often treat this using the F.A.S.T. method. What this does is to focus on only the areas of acne scarring rather than on the entire face. This enables a NYC certified dermatologist to use higher levels of laser energy. Patients see a dramatic improvement as far as the appearance of the scars.
We’ve also used a TCA (trichloracetic acid) peel with the CROSS technique. The TCA gets dabbed directly into the ice pick scar. While this method is a bit older than that of the Fractional CO2 Laser, we do still use it successfully on many of our New York patients.