How The treatment Works
The Smoothbeam laser emits a beam of light that will alter the sebaceous glands underneath the skin. These are the glands that produce the oil that feeds the bacteria which causes subsequent inflammation.
This laser uses a unique diode technology to target the sebaceous gland which is the gland which produces oil. After several treatments the gland is reduced, thereby limiting oil production. Its patented 1450 nm wavelength heats the upper dermis and limits the penetration into skin to 400-500 microns where the sebaceous glands are located.
As an added benefit for patients with acne scarring seeking smoother skin, Smoothbeam safely improves acne scars and can also softens fine lines and wrinkles around the eyes.
Instead of drying out the skin, killing the germs, or drying up oil production, the Smoothbeam laser actually alters these glands.
The Smoothbeam laser is FDA-approved for the treatment of acne and acne scars. It allows for “lunchtime procedures” with no downtime since it is a non-ablative treatment.
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Frequently Asked Questions
What kind of acne does the Smoothbeam treat?
Both inflammatory and non-inflammatory acne lesions have been successfully treated. The laser has been used on the back, face and neck areas and could be used anywhere you might have acne. Acne on the back is resistant to many existing therapies
Should I continue to use my acne creams and medications?
Most over the counter and prescription creams and medications can be continued during the treatment. You should stop using any products containing Retin-A prior to laser treatments.
How does the Smoothbeam compare to blue-light devices?
Smoothbeam creates a thermal injury to the sebaceous gland, the root cause of acne. Blue-light therapy simply targets surface bacteria – a secondary effect of acne. Remaining, deeper bacteria are likely to recolonize and continue to develop resulting in a return of acne lesions over time. By targeting the root cause of acne, Smoothbeam reduces acne with fewer treatments and longer remission times
How much does this procedure cost?
During the consultation you will be given a firm estimate. Prices vary from $150.00 for a single area to $375.00 for a full face. Multiple areas are eligible for discounts. Off face treatments are quoted based on individual requirements.
What will my face look like after treatment?
Risks are low with Smoothbeam treatments. There will be mild redness and swelling in the area treated. This subsides in 2-12 hours, sometimes longer with sensitive skin. Some pigmentation changes can occur with more aggressive treatment that will resolve itself over time.
What precautions should I take?
Avoid sun exposure for 4 to 6 weeks before and after any laser treatment. You should not have any chemical peels or microdermabrasion treatments for one month prior to each treatment.
Is Smoothbeam painful?
No, generally many patients report a “mild” or slight snapping and tingling sensation due to the Dynamic Cooling Device (DCD).
How many treatments are required?
A series of 4 treatments are recommended to get maximum results. These are usually performed every 3-4 weeks. You will notice a gradual reduction in the number and severity of acne lesions over the next 3 weeks after your treatment. There will be a gradual improvement in fine lines, wrinkles, and acne scarring over the next 6-12 months.
How long will results last?
Studies have shown that acne improvement is maintained for at least 6 months to 1 year after the last laser treatment. We strongly recommend Obagi SkinCare Regiment to maintain healthy skin after laser treatments.
Smoothbeam Clinical Study
Clinical Study Protocol
In clinical studies, Smoothbeam exhibited a much higher clearance rate of acne lesions compared to existing therapies. There were also no unusual side effects or adverse reactions to Smoothbeam unlike drug therapy which has a well-publicized side-effect profile. Accutane, for instance, is known to cause severe birth defects and has been associated with depression. Finally, other treatments for acne cause severe drying and irritation of the skin for many patients. In addition, laser therapy is also expected to be less costly as it requires as few as 4 treatments compared to drug and topical skin creams, which a patient can be expected to use for years.
Twenty-seven patients were treated on bilateral areas of the back that were matched for acne severity at the start of the study. The areas were mapped using a template to mark the exact location for follow-ups and repeat treatments. One clinical site on the back received laser treatment with the Smoothbeam, and the other site was used as a control. There were four treatments spaced three weeks apart. Patients were followed for at least six months after their last treatment.
Clearing of acne lesions was calculated by manual counts of remaining lesions in both the treatment and control sites. Reductions in acne lesion counts were observed as soon as three weeks after the initial treatment. The clinical study demonstrated a 98% reduction of acne lesions in as few as four treatments. At the 24-week follow up, 100% lesion clearance was seen in all but one patient having 2 lesions present.