Acne and Acne Scar Treatment

Ann Arbor Acne Treatment

Bellafill revolutionized the treatment of acne scars   and is the only  filler for the treatment of acne scars that is FDA approved.

  • Acne and acne scarring -affects both men and women throughout their lives
  • starts with their teenage years
  • scars and post inflammatory hyperpigmentation persist even when there are no longer acne breakouts-causing embarassment and lowering self esteem.

Bellafill, offers relief and increased self esteem for those suffering from unsightly acne facial scars.

  •  only FDA approved filler for treatment of distensible acne scars (making them less visible)
  • after treatment, many patients have commented that no one notices that they once had acne scars, they do not have to wear as much makeup to cover the scars, and they are no longer embarrassed to be seen in public.

How Common is Acne?

 The most common skin disorder in the United States is AcneAffects up to 90% of teenagers

What Parts of My Skin May be Affected by Acne?

Acne  affects skin with the most oil producing glands  (face, upper chest, back).  Bacteria (normally present on the skin) overgrow, multiply in number, infect and degrade the skin. This leaves the residual of acne scars and postinflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH).

PostInflannatory Hyperpigmentation (PIH)

Without treatment, dark spots (post inflammatory hyperpigmentation- PIH) and permanent scars appear on the skin , even when the  acne clears. Patients have told us that this PIH is an unsightly reminder that they had acne.  (fortunately we have multiple treatments available that will help make this less noticeable).


Acne scars affect the majority of people with acne vulgaris (95%). These scars are caused by  abnormal  healing following dermal inflammation from active acne. Although scarring may occur with any form of acne vulgaris, it is most likely to occur with certain varieties including the severe nodulocystic variety.

Types of Acne Scars

Atrophic acne scars are the most common type of acne scar and have lost collagen from this healing response. Three types of atropic scars occur: ice-pick ; boxcar ; and rolling. Ice pick scars are  narrow  and  deep scars that extend into the dermis. Rolling scars are wider (4–5 mm across) with  a wave-like pattern. Boxcar scars are round or ovoid, indented with sharp borders (size varies from 1.5–4 mm). Keloid and hypertropic scars also occur, but are less common.

Dr.Burke utilizes a method of digital computer imaging (that he developed) to diagnose exactly where the problem areas are and help direct more exact treatment.

The  photos below are of a patient with severe acne scarring of her cheeks.  She has had one Bellafill treatment. The photo on the left shows before treatment ; 2 months after the first treatment; digital before treatment ;and digital two months after the first treatment.  This digital method of analysis permits a more detailed analysis and treatment of acne scarring, improving treatment outcomes. The photos on the right are standard color before/after treatment (2 months).


 Optimal Treatment through Microsubincision and guided injection.

Optimal correction requires a second treatment (and sometimes a third). Dr.Burke uses a special technique to treat distensible boxcar scars like these.  This involves release of underlying scarred skin through microsubincision followed by careful injection of tiny amounts of Bellafill to gently lift the scar toward the surrounding tissue level.

The following video illustrates Dr.Burke and his patient discussing treatment of distensible acne scars with Bellafill .

This next video illustrates Dr.Burke treating distensible facial acne scars with Bellafill.

This is Sharon before any treatment. Her color photo is on the left and beside it on the right is the digital analysis created by Dr.Burke to determine precisely where the acne scars are located, their size, depth, and treatability.  This permits more precise treatment and improves the end result.

This is the result 15 months later.  The color photo is on the left and the digital analysis is on the right.



This is Sharon 15 months after her Bellafill Treatment:

This is what Sharon said about her treatment:

Hello Dr. Burke and team:

I apologize. This is late in coming to you.  It is long overdue:
Achieving the optimal results I now know are a possibility for me. Thank you, Dr. Burke, for all that you have done for me.

For many years, it’d been difficult to look myself in the mirror just to put my makeup on, let alone go out and face the world. Tired of feeling like I was missing out on my own life because of my insecurity, I decided to see a specialist. I researched Dr. Burke, his practice, and his experience using Bellafill to treat scarring. I decided to make an appointment for a consultation, but my fear was that he might recommend a far costly major cosmetic surgery as my only option. Upon entering Dr. Burke’s office, I was greeted by his lovely staff who set my mind at ease. When I sat down with Dr. Burke, his genuine warmth and compassion moved me. His knowledge, empathy and transparency far exceeded my expectations.

Dr. Burke thoroughly examined my scarring,and much to my relief, felt that Bellafill would be an excellent option for me.I finally felt that there was hope, and began a treatment plan which consisted of a series of injections, spaced out over the course of 15 months. In two years time, I have seen a significant reduction in my scarring, and have experienced a much needed confidence boost, allowing me to feel more like myself than I have in years. I know that my skin will never be perfect, and there is much work still to be done, but I am incredibly grateful to Dr. Burke and his team for the results I have achieved.

I would recommend him to anyone seeking any type of cosmetic procedure, for he treats you as he would his own family, keeping your best interests in mind.

I look forward to continuing my care under Dr. Burke; I know that in his capable hands I will continue to come closer to achieving the optimal results I now know are a possibility for me. Thank you, Dr. Burke, for all that you have done for me.

With Sincere Appreciation,
Sharon Porter
Sent Saturday July 15, 2017 1:46 PM

Fat Atrophy and Facial Volume Loss also add to Acne Scar Prominence.

Adding Underlying volume and supporting facial tissues through minimally invasive options such as the Silhouette Instalift also improves scar appearance



Postinflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH) is the result of nodular or cystic acne leaving an inflamed red discoloration on the skin surface after the original acne lesion has resolved. PIH occurs more often in darker skin colors. Untreated scars can last for years and remain  permanent. For many, this is the major cosmetic complaint.

Dr.Burke offers laser treatments for active acne which convert a biologic byproduct of bacterial metabolism into an antibiotic like compound acting to suppress the bacteria producing it.acnedrrobertburkepatient2015



Dr.Burke also offers noninvasive and minimally invasive treatments to treat the side effects of acne – unsightly facial scars.

The actual treatment selected depends on individual findings and your history.

Dr.Burke is the first physician in AnnArbor to offer Bellafill,

The mechanism of action is illustrated in the following video:

Use of Computer Digital Imaging for Treatment Planning to Correct Acne Scars (the goal is to make them invisible!)

Dr.Burke uses digital computer imaging to help plan the actual treatment of acne scars. Digital photography starts with computer aided capture of the actual scars and surrounding skin.  This helps with discussion and actual localization of the specific scars to be treated. Distensible scars are the best responders while ice pick scars do not respond (other treatments are available for these).

Treatment includes microsubincision and careful microdeposition of small aliquots of Bellafill under the actual scars, elevating them to more closely match that of the surrounding skin.