Would a Peeling or Dermabrasion Treatment Work for Getting Rid of Keratosis Pilaris?

I have a bad keratosis pilaris on my legs and upper arms it looks like little red bumps and they get worse when it's cold. Sometimes hair gets trapped too. What can i do?

Doctor Answers 4

Keratosis Pilaris

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A dermabrasion can make your skin look smoother, but not less red.  Treatment with the pulsed dye laser can help lessen the redness and improve the appearance of the skin.  Although there is no known "cure" for keratosis pilaris, it can be controlled with treatments such as the above.


New York Dermatologic Surgeon

Best Treatment Options for Keratosis Pilaris

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Keratosis pilaris can be a stubborn, hard to treat problem, especially during the very low humidity cold winter months we experience here in Vermont. As you probably know, it is caused by the dead skin cells sticking together within the hair follicles instead of being naturally shed into the environment. We have had the most success in treating this condition by using the Glytone KP Kit. I find this to be a better, longer-term solution, as well as prevention, than an occasional "manual" treatment such as a chemical peel or a dermabrasion.

Mitchell Schwartz, MD
South Burlington Dermatologic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Peel for KP

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I have never tried a microdermabraision but have done TCA peels for KP. This can be very effective but is temporary. 

Jo Herzog, MD
Birmingham Dermatologist
4.8 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Keratosis Pilaris is genetic

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KP is not an isolated condition and is a result of your genetics.  Thus, any improvement in your KP by procedure or cream is temporary because the cells in your skin are programmed to produce it.  20% of the American population has KP, so you are not alone. 

Dermabrasion is definitely not a treatment for KP

Daniel I. Wasserman, MD
Naples 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.