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Can I Have Chemical Peel Done On My Face After Having Surgical Dermabrasion?

I am 45 years old and I had a dermabrasion when I was 16 years old because of acne scars. Can I have chemical peel done on my face? Do you think my skin would be too sensitive to this treatment even after all these years?

Doctor Answers 12

Chemical Peels/Lasers for acne scars

Always make sure that you have an evaluation by a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon or Dermatologist.  Skin after dermabrasion can be a little more sensitive.  You should be able to get a peel or laser treatment for the acne scars since the dermabrasion was so many years ago.  What type of peel/laser will depend on your skin, and the desired outcome. 

Fort Worth Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

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Chemical Peels after dermabrasion

Since you had your dermabrasion many years ago, I don't see why you could not have a chemical peel now.
There is a new generation of chemical exfoliants unlike the traditional chemical peels of the past. Instead of using a high concentration of just one acid, the newer chemical  peels use a combination of acids at a lower concentration that offer a synergistic effect. One of the peels that we offer in our practice is the VI Peel which is effective on all skin types and treats numerous skin conditions--such as hyperpigmentation and helping to reverse the effects of  sun damage and other environmental factors.

Also, you mentioned that you had your dermabrasion due to acne scarring. You may even be an excellent candidate for laser resurfacing.

I would recommend that you consult with a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon or Dermatologist to determine what your best course of  treatment would be to obtain your desired results. Best wishes to you.

Kimberly A. Henry, MD
Greenbrae Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Acne surgery and chemical peels

Chemical peels are great for resurfacing of the skin and reducing sebum content. We utilize the Melapeels often in our practice for acne.


Dr. Karamanoukian

Raffy Karamanoukian, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 57 reviews

An examination is essential before peeling, consider other options...

To answer your question directly, its YES but... 
the type and strength of peel will depend on many factors including-

1. The depth and strength of chemical peel you are aiming to get- low strength glycolic vs medium depth TCA or Deep Jessers/ TCA or (outdated) phenol?
2. The current state of your skin- can depigmentation or colour changes be seen after your dermabrasion
3. Your skin colour or ethinic race plays a part
4. Your current medical history
5. The most important questions is 'What are you aiming to achieve?'

Consider treatments such as fractional lasers, fillers, or a combination of things to achieve the result, not just a treatment. Your Dermatologist or Plastic Surgeon can give you the BEST solution to achieve the optimal outcome. 

Hope this helps

Dr Davin S. Lim
Laser and Cosmetic Surgeon
Brisbane, Australia

Davin Lim, MBBS, FACD
Brisbane Dermatologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Chemical peels after dermabrasion

Excellent question.
  • The answer depends entirely on your skin and the depth of the peel.
  • Lasers and chemical peels can be light, medium depth or deep.
  • Some skins after previous dermabrasion are thin, scarred or fragiel.
  • Have your skin assessed by a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon or Dermatologist, and depending on your skin and your goals, decide on peel vs. laser, the correct depth and preparation beforehand.
  • Best wishes.

Chemical Peels for acne scars

Thank you for your question.  Chemical peels are perfect for exfoliating.  The surgical dermabrasion that was performed many years ago will not effect the peel.  Most chemical peels are superficial and may do little to improve an acne scar.  Laser treatments may be a better option depending on the procedure chosen.  I recommend a consultation with a dermatologist for your best outcome. 
After your treatment, what you use on your skin can affect the healing.  Look for products that are hypoallergenic, fragrance free, and chemical free. 
Good luck, take care.

Cheryl Lee Eberting, MD
Salt Lake City Dermatologist
4.5 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Additonal Acne Scarring Treatments After Surgical Dermabrasion

Although, chemical peels can be performed to further improve acne scarring following surgical dermabrasion; laser resurfacing would typically be a better option.  
It is recommended to be evaluated by a plastic surgeon to discuss your options.

Craig Mezrow, MS, MD
Philadelphia Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Chemical Peel After Dermabrasion?

Thank you for your question. Dermabrasion is great for exfoliating dead skin cells. Chemical peel is great for exfoliation, smoothening out texture, acne, and acne scarring. There are different levels of peels. I would recommend being treated under the supervision of a Board Certified Dermatologist for safest and best treatment option. I hope this helps.

Chemical peel after dermabrasion

It is possible to have a chemical peel after dermabrasion; however, there are many different peels involving different products and strengths.  You should consult a dermatologist who can assess your skin and decide on the best treatment for you.

Martie Gidon, MD, FRCPC
Toronto Dermatologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

You may be a good candidate for a chemical peel

Since it has been several years since your dermabrasion, you may be a good candidate for a chemical peel.  Peel strengths can be customized depending on your needs; therefore, a milder peel that addresses superficial layers of skin can be applied to sensitive skin. See a board certified dermatologist to determine if a chemical peel would be beneficial for you and which strength of peel would best meet your needs. Luckily, chemical peels come in many different strengths and the proper one can be selected for you.

Edmond Griffin, MD
Atlanta Dermatologic Surgeon

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.