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J Cosmet Laser Ther. 2018 Oct 15:1-8. doi: 10.1080/14764172.2018.1525749. [Epub ahead of print]

Efficacy of fractional carbon dioxide laser versus microneedling in the treatment of striae distensae.

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a National Institute of Laser Enhanced Sciences , Cairo University , Egypt.
b Dermatology & Venereology , Cairo University , Egypt.
c Faculty of Medicine , Cairo University , Egypt.



Fractional photothermolysis is creation of microscopic thermal zones of controlled depth, width and density. Microneedling is a simple treatment modality to reduce striae distensae.


Evaluate and compare the efficacy of fractional carbon dioxide laser and microneedling as a treatment of striae distensae.


Individuals with striae distensae received three split-body treatments at four-week intervals. The right side of the body was treated with fractional CO2 laser, while the other side with microneedling. Assessment was done by comparing photographs before and after treatments by two blinded physicians using a quartile grading scale. Evaluation also included patient satisfaction score and histopathological examination.


In total 33 subjects were enrolled and 30 completed the study. By quartile grading score, we recorded 55% moderate-excellent improvement of striae in the dermaroller-treated side but with fractional CO2 laser-treated side, we recorded 76% of patients had moderate-excellent improvement. Patients were more satisfied with fractional CO2 laser than the microneedling. Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, as a complication of fractional CO2 laser, appeared in 11 patients.


Fractional CO2 laser is more effective in treating striae with acceptable side effects but still microneedling can be afforded as an effective, safe and cheap method.


Striae distensae; dermaroller; fractional CO2 laser; microneedling

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