MEDICAL PROCEDURES > DERMABRASION
Dermabrasion is a technique to uniformly regenerate the most superficial skin layers by mechanical exfoliation (sanding). Treatment softens skin irregularities, giving it a smoother appearance. It gives similar results to chemical peels. Dermabrasion is the most frequent method used to improve the appearance of aged skins (reducing wrinkles). scars, stretch marks, acne scars and, in general, in any process that has changed the uniformity of the skin. Results are immediate, improving texture, smoothness and skin brightness. It stimulates the renewal of the epidermal cells, reducing scars and stretch marks, the depth and size of wrinkles, the pore size, and also reduces hyperpigmentation due to photo-ageing.
Simple and fast procedure. It made be done in small areas or on the whole face. It may be used alone or combined with other cosmetic procedures such as chemical peels, resulting in a perfect combination. No previous preparation of the skin is required, only make sure that the skin is not irritated (no recent exposure to the sun or UVA rays).
Depending on the depth of the treatment, indications may vary from a simple immediate procedure to a more in-depth treatment: prevention and treatment of photo-ageing, fine wrinkles, dilated pores, hyperkeratosis, pigmentation changes (melasma, lentigos, dyschromia), tattoos, stretch marks, and scars.
Treatment is not recommended for the following patients: those having long-term steroid treatment with active infection (flat warts, herpes) those with vitiligo after treatment with botulinum toxin, with poor healing/coagulation (diabetics, haemophiliacs…), and those with rosacea and/or telangiectasias.
Immediately after the procedure, erythema, purple spots, and slight oedema may appear around the area. Scabs may also appear. The most common risk is pigmentation changes, which can either be hyperpigmentation, generally caused by sun exposure in the days and months following the procedure, or they may be hypopigmentation. Although infection and abnormal scarring are rare with these skin treatments, they are possible. Some people develop excessive scar tissue (keloids or hypertrophic scars). If you have freckles, these may disappear in the treated area. Treatment is not recommended in skin that has been previously subject to radiotherapy or has been burnt.
Dermabrasion consists of progressively removing the superficial layers of the skin by applying an abrasive instrument, either manually or using a motor or surgical turbine. Usually, a diamond bur that rotates at high speed is used, or micro-crystals are applied at high pressure (aluminium oxide…). Depending on the depth, the procedure is performed under local anaesthesia combined with sedation, which will keep the patient awake yet relaxed, and discomfort will be minimised. It generally lasts between an hour or hour and a half, depending on the area to be treated. The treatment is frequently carried out in several sessions, especially if the scars are deep. Caution when applying the treatment on eyelids (to avoid bruising and purple spots). Instructions will be given for skin care after treatment. A sunscreen will be recommended for the period after the treatment to protect the skin from ultraviolet radiation, but it is also advisable to limit exposure to the sun to a minimum. Immediately after the dermabrasion, you may experience a burning sensation. However, discomfort disappears quickly, except for a feeling of tightness in the area treated. It is important to keep the skin moisturised during the first week after treatment by using creams based on hyaluronic acid, vitamin C, aloe vera, rose hip oil… And continue with treating with retinoids that stimulate the repair and regeneration of the skin.
Number of sessions needed
It obviously depends on the pathology to be treated. Usually, 10 to 15 sessions are necessary, one every 15-20 days. It is recommended to have maintenance sessions (1 session every 2-3 months).
• Dr. Gabriel Serrano Sanmiguel