Dermabrasion is a surgical procedure whereby your skin’s surface irregularities are diminished by abrading or “sanding” your skin with special diamond rotary instruments. Your Cosmetic Surgeon carefully reduces the skin surface to a specific depth and after a period of healing, your skin is smoother with fewer irregularities.
Often, more than one technique is used to give the best improvement in the appearance of facial scars and wrinkles. For example, frequently a dermabrasion will be performed several weeks after scar revision. Sometimes, dermabrasion and chemical peels are performed together or in sequence to treat deeper wrinkles, such as those occurring around your lips.
Most of these procedures are performed using a light intravenous sedative and local anesthesia. Sometimes cold packs are applied to your face before dermabrasion. Depending on the amount of area to be treated, this procedure usually takes between 30 to 90 minutes to complete. You should experience little, if any, discomfort.
In general, during the first several days after surgery your skin is somewhat tender and swelling can be expected, most prominently around the eyes. Usually after several days the treated areas appear as if you have had a bad sunburn. In most cases you are able to camouflage the areas adequately with makeup after about one week. It is not at all unusual to have some persistent redness, sometimes lasting several months. Sometimes, several weeks after surgery small white dots, resembling acne, may appear. These disappear in a short period of time. Occasional areas of darkened skin color may appear. This is usually temporary and may be treated with prescription facial creams. Sometimes the treated areas will appear lighter than untreated areas. While this is sometimes permanent, it is usually quite subtle.