Laser-assisted delivery of lyophilized-growth factors (L-GFs) via fractional CO2 laser significantly improves post-acne scars on the face, especially when compared with platelet-rich plasma (PRP), according to study findings published in Dermatologic Therapy.

In this study, 45 patients with facial post-acne scars had both sides of the face treated with 3 sessions of fractional CO2 laser. These sessions were followed by topical L-GFs on 1 side and conventional PRP on the other.

The Echella d’Ѐvaluation Clinique des Cicatrices d’Acné (ECCA) score was used to semi-quantitatively assess types, number, depth, and sites of the post-acne scars semi-quantitatively, and the Goodman and Baron’s qualitative scare (GBQS) scale was used to assess these same endpoints qualitatively.

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There was a significant decrease in the ECCA score on both sides of the face in response to each treatment compared with baseline (P <.001). The use of fractional CO2 laser with L-GFs resulted in a significantly greater reduction in ECCA score compared with the combination of the laser with PRP (P =.003).

Also, the investigators observed a significant improvement in the GBQS scale on both sides of the face (P =.002 and P <.001). Once again, the combination of fractional CO2 laser with L-GFs was associated with greater improvement on the GBQS scale compared with fractional CO2 laser plus PRP (P =.035).

The Quartile Grading Scale demonstrated a more significant degree of clinical improvement with the combined fractional CO2 laser and L-GFs than the combination with PRP (P =.010). In addition, although most patients were satisfied with treatment on both sides of the face, significantly more satisfaction was observed for the side of the face treated with L-GFs (P =.034).

Limitations of the study included the small sample size as well as the lack of a placebo and/or control population.

The study investigators concluded that fractional CO2 laser “with L-GFs is more significantly effective than its combination with PRP in the treatment of atrophic post-acne scars with shorter downtime,” and therefore recommend the innovative treatment approach for patients with these scars.


Neinaa YME, Al-Khayat LA, Suliman GAM, Ameen TE. Fractional carbon dioxide laser-assisted delivery of lyophilized-growth factors is a promising treatment modality of post-acne scars. Published online November 1, 2020. Dermatol Ther. doi:10.1111/dth.14488