CO2 Laser
Pre and Post-Op Instructions

Prior to Treatment:

  • Prepare large container (i.e.gallon-size) of vinegar and water mixture (1 cup water, 2 tsp vinegar), cover and refrigerate to use cold following your laser procedure.
  • Have plenty clean washcloths or hand-size towels available for vinegar and water soaks following your treatment.
  • Divide frozen peas into individual sandwich-size baggies for use following your CO2.

CO2 Pre-Treatment Instructions

  1. Please notify us of any history of diabetes, herpes, blood coagulation disorders, keloid or hypertrophic scaring.
  2. For the one month prior to treatment, avoid sun exposure, as well as tanning beds and tanning creams. If you are tanned, you may not be treated. Use a sunscreen designed to protect against UVA and UVB rays with a 30+ SPF at all times and reapply as directed by the manufacturer. Sun exposure is defined as direct sun exposure without protection for ten or more minutes.
  3. Discontinue the use of Retin-A or any retinol-type products at least 1 week prior to your treatment.
  4. Discontinue the use of all exfoliating products, and glycolic and alph-hydoxy acid products, 1 week prior to your treatment.
  5. Wait at least one week after Botox injections before having a fractional CO2 laser treatment.
  6. The most common reason for post treatment infection or acne eruption is caused by the use of products that have accumulated bacteria. Thoroughly clean all your existing make-up brushes or purchase new brushes and application sponges prior to using following your laser treatment. For your convenience, Dallas Surgical Arts has many quality products available, especially designed for post-laser treatments.
  7. CO2 kit will be given by Dallas Surgical Arts.
  8. Start the hydroquinone that is given to you at the pre-surgery (at least 10-14 days prior to the procedure). Do not use the hydroquinone the evening before the procedure and do not use the morning before the procedure. You should also be using the sunscreen that was provided in conjuction with the hydroquinone.
  9. You should not wear any jewelry or contact lenses on your treatment day. Instead bring your eyeglasses.
  10. On the day of your treatment, please come to the office with clean skin (clean shaven if male). Your treatment area should be free of any makeup, creams, perfumes and lotions, except for our sunscreen.
  11. Comfortable clothes should be worn. If your face or neck is being treated, wear a button-down shirt.

Day Of Procedure

Medications that will be given:

Start day of procedure:

  • Pain Medication: Depending on the type of medication Dr. Sanovich had discussed with you.
  • Zofran for anti-nausea if needed.

Start day following procedure:

  • Antibiotic: Keflex 500 TID, 21 tabs (7days)
  • Steriod to help with swelling: Medrol Dose Pack
  • Anti-Viral: Valacyclovir 500mg (7 days)

Day Of Surgery

As soon as you arrive home, begin vinegar and water soaks 2-3 times per hour until bed time and ice rotations. Please use a washcloth in between ice and your skin due to temperature not being able to be detected. We want you to be mindful that you may not be able to tell a temperature is painful on your face.

CO2 Post-Care

You will experience a burning sensation on the skin that will last between 30 minutes and up to 3-4 hours following your treatment on the first day.

  • The treated area will remain reddish-brown for 2-4 days, or more, depending of the depth of your treatment.
  • Begin vinegar soaks as soon as you arrive home and as often as needed (1 cup water mixed with 2 tsp vinegar. It is recommended that you prepare a large quantity – gal or more – the day before. Keep covered and refrigerated so that the mixture will be cold when you begin use. Replenish as needed).
  • Use frozen peas (bagged in sandwich-size baggies) every two hours for 20 minutes maximum for swelling and discomfort.
  • Every 2 hours cover the treated areas with Vaniply Onitment (Step one) from your CO2 kit. Your skin should NEVER look dry and should always be glistening with ointment. If skin is dry, you should be applying more than the every 2 hours.
  • Continue taking all medications as directed by your physician.
  • If necessary, as directed by your physician take acetaminophen or pain reliever of physician’s choice.
  • After 24 hours, cleanse your skin twice a day using Vaniply Gentle Facial Cleanser (Step 2) from your CO2Kit. Crusting may occur, do not pick the crusts. Avoid hot water. Do not scrub treated area.
  • Approximately 72 hours after treatment, the area will begin to peel. Do not pull on the peeling skin. Keep a Vanicream moisturizing skin cream (Step 3) on all areas and let the skin peel spontaneously. The treated are will peel for 2-3 days and will be pink for a few days. Normal skin color usually returns rapidly once peeling is complete.
  • Eye Area: Treatment to the upper eye lids may result in swelling and create a slight squint. Redness may persist up to 3 days. Cleanse your eyes with cool water and dab or pat very lightly with a soft towel. Avoid hot water. Lubricating the eye with drops (i.e. artificial tears) will help to decrease the dryness of your eyes.
  • If the skin around the mouth is tight, minimize facial expressions, remember to moisturize with Recovery Balm, as needed and use a straw to drink.
  • Rest. Avoid strenuous exercise, bending, straining, stooping or lifting heavy objects for 1 week after procedure. These activities may cause more swelling and pain on your face and slow down your recovery.
  • Sleep at a slightly elevated position. Using 2-3 pillows under your head & neck or sleep a few nights in a reclining chair.
  • Avoid sun exposure for at least six months. Use the sunscreen provided every day. Use a hat and sunglasses. Your skin is extremely vulnerable to the sun after having a laser treatment. Protecting your skin and limiting sun exposure ensures the best cosmetic results.
  • Following treatment, normal activities may resume per level of comfort. However, no swimming or using hot tubs/whirlpools while redness is present, usually for at least 24-48 hours.
  • Once you feel comfortable and healed, a normal skin care regime, including makeup or shaving, can be resumed. Be careful water is not too hot when shaving.
  • Schedule an appointment following your procedure as soon as possible for 1 week check up.
  • Call the office immediately if problems of increased pain, fever, drainage of pus, signs of infection or bleeding occur.

Who Should I Call If I Have Questions?

Dallas Surgical Arts Phone Number 972-566-4900, Monday – Friday during business hours. After business hours, the office number will be able to get in contact with the doctor through a call service.