Possible Revolution in Skin Care

Arnold R. Oppenheim, MD

Article by
Virginia Beach Dermatologist

An article in the latest issue of the Archives of Dermatology describes a novel microneedle device. This devices is composed of an array of fine needles whose depths penetrates the epidermis, but no further. It has a disposable head. In the study published the device appears to be safe, effective and nearly painless.

The idea has been around for years. Many of you have probably heard of the Dermaroller. This is a similar device. However, the concept behind this is to damage the dermis. Its subsequent repair is with fresher, new collagen thus permitting a younger appearance to the skin.

This new instrument, developed by the 3M company, is different in that it is designed to allow topical medications to better penetrate the skin. With this device it may be possible for collagen and other larger molecules may now be able to worm their way into the dermis. Presently, these molecules are much too big to do so and being them in a skincare product is a waste of money. A host of cosmeceuticals might find increased efficacy if applied after the penetration of these needles.

Botox might also be better administered topically. I can foresee the use of templates being designed to be fit over the musculature of the face. 

Topical anesthetics might obviate the need for anesthetic injections.

I can leave the rest to your imagination.