Dermabrasion is a skin-resurfacing procedure that uses a rapidly rotating device to scrap away outer layers of skin. The scraping continues until the surgeon reaches the safest level which will make the scar or wrinkle less visible. After dermabrasion, the skin that grows back is usually smoother and younger-looking. Dermabrasion can be used to treat Scars caused by acne, chicken pox, surgery or injuries
  • Fine wrinkles
  • Sun-damaged skin, including age spots
  • Uneven skin tone
  • Swelling and redness of the nose (rhinophyma)
  • Potentially precancerous skin lesions (actinic keratoses)
Dermabrasion can be done alone or in combination with other cosmetic procedures.

The procedure

Dermabrasion can be performed fairly quickly. Dermabrasion can take a few minutes to more than an hour, depending on how much skin is being treated. It’s not uncommon for the procedure to be performed more than once, or in stages, especially when scarring is deep or a large area of skin is involved. Dermabrasion is typically done in an office-based procedure room or outpatient surgical facility. However, if you’re having extensive work done, dermabrasion might be done in a hospital. Your doctor will move the dermabrader — a small motorized device with an abrasive wheel or brush across your skin with constant, gentle pressure. He will carefully remove the outer layers of skin to reveal new, smoother skin. Micro-dermabrasion is a miniature form of dermabrasion where only the outermost layer of the epidermis (not dermis) is removed by a special apparatus called micro-dermabrader.

Dermabrasion can cause various side effects

You might notice tiny white heads on the treated skin. These bumps usually disappear on their own or with the use of soap or an abrasive pad. Dermabrasion might cause your pores to grow larger. Typically, pores shrink to near normal size once the swelling has subsided. Rarely, dermabrasion that is done too deeply can cause scarring. Steroid medications can be used to soften the appearance of these scars.

After the procedure

After dermabrasion, treated skin will be covered with a moist, nonstick dressing. After dermabrasion, treated skin will be red and swollen. You’ll likely feel some burning, tingling, or aching. Swelling will begin to decrease within a few days to one week but might last for weeks or even months. Your new skin will be sensitive and bright pink for several weeks. The pinkness will likely take about three months to fade. During this time, you can gradually begin to resume your normal activities. You can expect to be back at work in about two weeks. It’s important to protect your skin from the sun until the pigment has completely returned to your skin- as long as six to twelve months.

Results Refinishing treatments can offer dramatic improvements in the surface of your skin, but it will take some time before you see the final results.