What is MiXto SX Micro Fractional CO2 laser?
CO2 is a carbon dioxide laser that has been used for more than 25 years in the aesthetic industry for the treatment of conditions such as fine lines and deep wrinkles, scars of various origin, uneven pigmentation and dilated pores.
When the CO2 beam of light comes into contact with the epidermis (top layers of skin) it heats and vaporises the skin tissue, instantly removing the superficial layers of the skin, scars and wrinkles while smoothing out the surface of the skin. The skin remodeling occurs with new skin and collagen growth.
MiXto SX stands for the mixture between CO2 energy and fractional resurfacing, the SX stand for surgical because the laser can also be used to make a very clean incision without causing bleeding.
How does it work?
The MiXto SX gives the clinical practitioner more control to regulate the depth of penetration and the amount of heat delivered by the beam. The high speed scanner, driven by a patented technology, delivers laser energy in a fragmented and non-sequential way that minimises heat build up on the skin and discomfort, whilst allowing more energy to be delivered than would otherwise be allowable.
This process is repeated until the entire area is treated. Delivering energy this way allows maximum time for thermal cooling of the tissue, less pain for the patient and faster recovery!
Compared to traditional resurfacing, which involves removing all of skin tissue in single continuous CO2 laser treatment, this is a big step forward in technology for both the patient and the clinical practitioner.
How is this different than other laser treatments?
The CO2 MiXto laser delivers more results in a single treatment than other suppliers of laser systems can accomplish in three treatments, all with less discomfort, downtime and cost. The CO2 laser is also able to penetrate deeper into the skin, giving better resurfacing results and producing fresher, more even skin.
Does the CO2 treatment hurt?
We provide patients with topical anaesthetic which makes the treatment more comfortable to experience without unnecessary pain or stress, although patients should be aware that there is normally a slight stinging sensation at the time of treatment.
Patients are free to drive home once their skin have been treated with gel for protection against risk of infection. The immediate after effect is to experience mild discomfort for up to 1 hour and is similar to bad sunburn.
What are the risks?
Erythema (redness of skin): the laser-treated areas have a distinctive redness representing increased blood flow due to the growth of the superficial tissue and collagen. It will gradually fade during the first few days.
Inflammation (swelling): Treatment with the MiXto system presents a minimal amount of swelling that can last up to 24 hours.
Hyperpigmentation (tanning): This is presented after the third day of the procedure but then begins to shed and reveal younger healthy looking skin. A personal interview and clinical examination will be conducted to obtain relevant facts about your medical and dermatological history, and any medications you are currently taking or have taken in the past.
Infection and viral risks: Patients are provided with both an antiviral and antibiotics prescription to combat these risks. The course of the prescription normally commences two days before the treatment and are taken 3 days after the treatment.
What areas can be treated?
Fractional treatment with the MiXto SX CO2 laser has been proven safe for the face, neck, chest, arms and hands. In fact it can be used on most parts of the skin that shows signs of sun damage, ageing or pigmentation.
How long is recovery?
Most patients are ready to go back to work after the third day as the peeling process would be finished and the skin will have healed. However, we know that many people would prefer to recover at home until more of the redness has subsided – normally over course of next couple of days. The final decision as to when patient do go back to work will depend on their lifestyle and the patient’s attitude to leaving home with glowing pink skin. Overall, the typical downtime is 4-5 days.
What is the recovery like?
The patient is red and can be swollen the next day. Typically, on the second, third or fourth day the patient is peeling and can experience a little itchiness as the peeling process commences. Patients are provided with ointment specifically to tackle and combat the effect of itchiness which may last a day. Patients are given full aftercare instructions on the day of the procedure.
When do you see the results?
Right away. When we are doing the procedure you can immediately see the skin contract and shrink. The patient will really see the benefits by the time the skin is completely peeled and will continue to see results for up to six months with new collagen regeneration that “plumps” up the skin.
Who is the best candidate for this procedure?
There are three separate groups the CO2 laser applies to: the younger patient with severe acne scars, the middle-aged patient with wrinkles and age spots, and the older patient with wrinkles, age spots and pre-cancerous lesions.
How many treatments are needed?
In most cases only one, but for deeper wrinkles and deep acne scars two or more treatments maybe necessary for optimum results. Expected outcomes will be discussed with the nurse practitioner at consultation.
Is it just for the face or can it be used on other areas of the body?
CO2 is most commonly used on the face but can be used on neck, chest, arms and hands.
Is the treatment expensive?
The new technology has actually brought the price down due without the compromising the results. This is a one-off treatment and is proven to be the most effective laser treatment available, so in the long term it is a very good value treatment.
What is the cost?
Micro-fractional CO2 Skin Resurfacing starts at £200 for smaller areas of skin tightening and improved texture for either neck, hands or chest and for larger areas can be up to £1500. The price depends on the size of the area being covered and a final price will be given at consultation.