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Efficacy and safety of fractional carbon dioxide laser for treatment of unwanted facial freckles in phototypes II–IV: a pilot study

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An Erratum to this article was published on 11 July 2014


Facial freckles are a cosmetic concern to Egyptians, particularly young females. Several therapeutic lines exist with variable response rates and limitations. Fractional carbon dioxide (FCO2) laser provides minimal ablation and therefore less down time and less side effects. The efficacy and safety of this laser technology have still not been studied in freckles. The aim of this study is to assess the efficacy and safety of FCO2 laser in the treatment of unwanted facial freckles in Egyptians. Twenty patients undergone a single session of FCO2 laser and then were followed up clinically a month later. Photographs were taken before treatment and at follow-up visit and were assessed by three blinded investigators. Percent of global improvement was measured on a 4-point grading scale. Patient’s satisfaction and adverse events were recorded. Two patients (10 %) showed grade 1 improvement, while eight patients (40 %) showed grade 2 improvement. Nine patients (45 %) showed grade 3 improvement, and only one patient (5 %) showed grade 4 improvement. FCO2 laser resurfacing is effective and safe in treatment of facial freckles in skin phototypes II–IV. It can offer a more practical alternative to topical treatments, and a cheaper alternative to Q-switched lasers.

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Funding sources

The laser sessions were performed free of charge, in the laser unit of Dermatology department, Kasr Al Ainy teaching hospital, Cairo University. Medications were partly dispensed by the out-patient clinic and partly sponsored by the authors.

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Correspondence to Vanessa Hafez.

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El Zawahry, B., Zaki, N., Hafez, V. et al. Efficacy and safety of fractional carbon dioxide laser for treatment of unwanted facial freckles in phototypes II–IV: a pilot study. Lasers Med Sci 29, 1937–1942 (2014).

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