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As there is increasing attention on the therapeutic intervention known as carboxytherapy, it’s important to understand what the treatment is and what it may—and may not—be able to do. Ahead, Michael H. Gold, MD, Medical Director, Gold Skin Care Center and Tennessee Clinical Research Center in Nashville, gives an overview.

What is it?

Carboxytherapy is the therapeutic use of carbon dioxide (CO2) in its gaseous state. In use since 1933, carboxytherapy has referred to the subcutaneous injection of CO2 or percutaneous application in a warm bath. Such traditional carboxytherapy delivery options had some drawbacks, including the pain and cost associated with injections.

Enter topical carboxytherapy, which provides the benefits of CO2 infusion without any needles. Lumisque’s CO2Lift carboxytherapy or the use of transcutaneous CO2 carboxy gel for the improvement of skin procedures, has similar results as injections, making it a powerful anti-aging and aesthetic solution for the face, eyes, body, and vagina. CO2LIFTV addresses vaginal issues associated with aging, childbearing, or stress, and CO2LIFT Face treats the signs of facial aging.

How well does it work?

When used on its own or pre- or post-procedure, the CO2Lift increased hydration by more than 117 percent compared to baseline, and these improvements lasted for up to three weeks. The physiologic effects of CO2Lift include increases in:

  • Tissular oxygenation
  • Flow rate and vasodilatation
  • Neoprocollagenesis
  • Neoangiogenesis
  • Growth factors, including vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)

The CO2Lift also helps clean out the extracellular matrix (ECM) for improved tissue health and creates biostimulation of the connective tissues, contributing to the restoration of the microvascular-tissular unit exchanges. On the face, this translates to reductions in fine lines and wrinkles, enhanced tone and texture, smaller pores, and improvements in dark circles around the eyes. It’s also proven safe and effective for regenerating vulva/vaginal tissue and reducing the symptoms of genitourinary syndrome of menopause.

How is this therapy administered?

The CO2Lift can be administered in the office or at home. Kits are available for both facial and vaginal indications. To start, patients or providers empty the entire contents of the large pack (water) and small pack (gluconolactone) into a small mixing bowl and mix thoroughly for one minute to activate the carboxy. The CO2 is created when the water mixes with the gluconolactone to form a mild acid. That mild acid mixes with the magnesium carbonate to form CO2. The resulting hypoallergenic CO2 gel is absorbed into the skin.

The mixture is applied immediately to the area to be treated via a small application stick. It should be applied as a thick layer (like frosting a cake) and remain in place for 35-45 minutes. The mixture is removed using an application stick. The CO2Lift can be used before or after a procedure or as a stand-alone skin rejuvenation treatment.

How many treatments are needed?

Most patients will need around three to seven applications of CO2Lift, provided over as many weeks, with monthly touch-ups.

What procedures can it complement?

The CO2Lift can enhance results and minimize downtime following injections, microneedling, and laser skin rejuvenation. When used before or after energy-based procedures, CO2Lift will:

  • Reduce treatment pain
  • Reduce complications and post-treatment side effects
  • Decrease downtime
  • Improve outcomes
  • Enhance patient experience
  • Reduce post-treatment side effects

Who can benefit from this procedure?

CO2Lift provides stand-alone benefits and can be used before or after injections, microneedling, and laser skin rejuvenation to enhance results and minimize any downtime.

It does not hurt. There is no pain with the CO2Lift.

The bottom line?

CO2Lift provides measurable benefits with no downtime and can be a great add-on service for all patients to do at home or in the office either on its own or before and after a treatment.

Based on a presentation from Cosmetic Surgery Forum (CSF) 2021. CSF 2022 is November 30-December 3 in Nashville. For information or registration:

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