Which brand of chemical peel should I use on acne scars?
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Doctor Answers 3
TCA peels best for scars, AHA, Sal acid or Lactic acid for acne prone skin.
There is no brand for 'acne scar peels', as specialist use TCA in very high concentrations. This is only used to treat certain types of acne scars, such as ice pick and narrow box car scars. Peels however can help decrease blackheads, and in mild cases of acne scarring stimulate collagen. Video shows how I use Lactic Acid, however AHAs with Glycolic acid can be effective. Its never about the brand, but the method that gives the best results, all the best, Dr Davin Lim. Brisbane. Australia.
Appropriate Acne Scar Treatment Requires An Individualized Treatment Plan
Your question suggests the preconceived notion that chemical peels are necessarily the best or even a very good approach to treating acne scars. They are not and your question really deserves a more detailed answer.
It is rare for an individual to have only one kind of acne scar. In general, those that suffer with a great deal of scars demonstrate the whole range of atrophic (indented) acne scars and occasionally elevated ones. Common types of indented scars include rolling scars, boxcar scars, and pit scars. Rolling scars and boxcar scars can be elevated using Subcision Lifting. The latter, which depends upon stimulating your own production of new collagen and elastic fibers, can be further benefited by the addition of a biostimulatory filler, which independently promotes new, native collagen and elastic fiber synthesis, while providing the added benefit of immediate elevation and smoothing.
Pit (ice pick) scars may be addressed with the TCA CROSS Technique, which uses very high concentrations of TCA (hence the name) or phenol. Superficial peels may add glow to the skin, but do little for significantly improving acne scars and are generally not worthwhile in this regard.
Not uncommonly there may be an accompanying generalized loss of volume in an area of heavy scarring. If this is indeed so, then the use of a volumizing filler injected more deeply below the the temple can help to stretch the overlying scars for further smoothing, as well as diminish the abnormal "craters of the moon" shadowing within them that contributes to making them visibly so much more prominent.
Elevated scars include hypertrophic and keloid scars. Both, particularly the former, typically respond quite well and rapidly to anti-inflammatory injections to flatten them.
And finally, if necessary or desired, medical microneedling may be used to blend the surface color and texture of the treated scars with the surrounding normal skin.
In my opinion, much of the hype over expensive fraxel lasers, radiofrequency and ultrasound devices is just that: marketing hype by the device manufacturers with little hard science to back them up. So be very wary of medspas and others hawking this or that "next best thing," "one size fits all" device for acne scars.
For more information on any of the above, check out the archives of
RealSelf.com, and, since your appearance is priceless, be sure to
consult with a board certified aesthetic physician with experience and
expertise in acne scar treatments before proceeding. Best of luck to you
Thank you for your question. Typically, we discuss the types of chemicals used. I suggest that you move forward by consulting with a board certified facial plastic surgeon to determine how you should use the following main chemicals in the chemical peel: phenol, trichloroacetic acid, and alphahydroxy acid as each work at a different strength.
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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.