New Procedure Fixes Wrinkles Using Gas

A new procedure promises to zap away wrinkles and sun damage using no peel, no knife and no injections. It is called the portrait facial.

Sara Celeste, 25, hopes this new face fix will erase the skin damage from too much tanning in her teens.

"I have a lot of sun damage and I think this is the first step to improve," explained Sara.

Numbing gel, applied hours earlier, is the first step of this surgical facial done while you are awake.

Several shots numb Sara's face further.

Drops are needed so she will not feel the thick protective plastic covers inserted into her eyes.

Unlike lasers, which use light, this portrait machine shoots condensed gas into deep layers of the skin to stimulate collagen growth.

"So there's no damage to the top layer of skin initially but over a period of a few days the top layer of skin-will shed," said Dr. William Groff, a cosmetic surgeon.

There is no contact between the machine and your skin.

"We're right above the skin, about five millimeters above, so there's no charring at all," explained Dr. Groff.

A full facial done takes about 30 minutes and is pain free, but there is some recovery time.

"The first two days I took Vicodan to make myself more comfortable, but pretty much after that I was fine," said Sara. "By day 12 I was wearing makeup, doing my normal routines."

"We tailor each treatment to every patient's needs," explained Dr. Groff.

Portrait facials work best on light to medium skin tones. Darker skin tones are more prone to developing side effects.

Sara says she did not have side effects and promises to take better care of her newly energized skin.

"As long as I take care of my skin it should last for years, but we will see," said Sara.

The portrait facial is a cosmetic procedure, so it is not covered by insurance and it is not cheap.

A full facial like Sara had costs around $4,000, but the results are said to last for years.

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