MICODERMABRASION is the use of a mechanical medium to exfoliate (remove) the top layer of dead cells from the epidermis. It is a non-invasive procedure. It does not cause cancer or affect any part of the body besides the skin. The instrument used in my practice uses a diamond tip which is safer and the most modern form of the equipment.
Microdermabrasion is used to treat the dark spots on the face from acne and the dark spots on the legs from mosquito bites. It treats sun damage; uneven, granular skin; blackheads; fine lines; open pores; scars, especially acne scars; minor surgical scars; stretch marks; dull, lifeless skin; and melasma.
Your skin is made up of two layers — an outer epidermis and an inner dermis. The epidermis is the layer closest to the outside world. It is made up of dead skin cells on top of another layer of cells which are in the process of maturing. This top-most layer is called the stratenum corneum and it acts as a barrier between the outside world and the lower layers of the skin. It keeps all but the smallest particles from penetrating the skin. All the action in microdermabrasion takes place at the level of the stratenum corneum.
When you remove and break up the stratenum corneum, the body interprets this as a mild injury and rushes to replace the lost cells with new and healthy cells. This may cause mild swelling and redness for the first hour or so in very sensitive skin. Depending on the reaction, this may last for an hour or two and usually all traces of this is gone in a day or two.
With the removal of the stratenum corneum, the surface of the skin is improved. The healing process begins in minutes and your skin will feel smooth and youthful again.
The microdermabrasion procedure may be combined with other procedures and other treatments.
It is important that the doctor see you before the treatment. In all cases we should stop the use of Retin-A before the treatment and accutane should not have been used for six months before the treatment.
In many cases, because many black people are prone to developing dark spots, we may have to tone down the pigment cells in the skin by using a sunblock for a few weeks before the procedure. This I find is of critical importance.
Microdermabrasion is not painful. After the procedure the tone of the skin will improve and the skin will feel soft and smooth.
If you suffer from an herpes simplex infection, cancer of the skin, cystic acne, diabetes, or have the HIV infection, we may not do the procedure on you.
Dr Persadsingh is a skin specialist and author of Acne in Black Women and The Hair in Black Women. He can be contacted at 960-2797.