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- What are dermabrasion and microdermabrasion?
- Who is a candidate for dermabrasion and microdermabrasion?
- How are dermabrasion and microdermabrasion performed?
- What should people expect after dermabrasion and microdermabrasion?
- Are there any adverse side effects with dermabrasion and microdermabrasion?
- Does insurance cover dermabrasion and microdermabrasion?
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How are dermabrasion and microdermabrasion performed?
Since dermabrasion is a surgical procedure, local anesthesia is required and is occasionally supplemented by intravenous sedation. When the skin is appropriately numb, an abrasive device is applied to the skin. This device could be a rapidly rotating wire brush or a diamond encrusted wheel or even abrasive screening. The choice depends on the anatomical location as well as the particular area to be treated. A refrigerant spray is often used to reduce the movement of the skin during the procedure. The ability to perform this procedure is very dependent on the skill and experience of the operator.
Microdermabrasion involves spraying an inert crystalline material with sufficient force to dislodge superficial skin cells without damaging the deeper layers of living cells. Aside from this superficial debridement, it produces mild inflammation.
What should people expect after dermabrasion and microdermabrasion?
The wound produced by dermabrasion, like any other wound, must be kept clean and moist. Gentle removal of crust and debris can occur after removal of the postoperative dressing (usually 24 to 48 hours after the procedure). Petroleum jelly is generally applied to the wound surface frequently. Healing usually occurs within 10 days and redness dwindles after three to six weeks.
Since microdermabrasion does not produce a wound, there is no postoperative issue aside from mild redness.
Are there any adverse side effects with dermabrasion and microdermabrasion?
As with any surgical procedure, infections can occur and these are treated with antibiotics. Undesirable color is more common in darkly pigmented individuals. Keloids and hypertrophic scars can occur, especially in patients with a genetic predisposition to scar.
Microdermabrasion has few side effects, but it is prudent to avoid treating patients who are taking isotretinoin.