Instructions for post operative acne skin care after a dermabrasion surgery procedure

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Post operative acne skin care after dermabrasion

Intensive acne skin care is required after the dermabrasion surgery. After dermabrasion surgery is completed, the surgeon will have the patient put a compress on the area to decrease any stinging that may be felt after the anesthetic wears off. At the same time, the patient is given specific acne skin care instructions that are indicated for their specific situation and the successful treatment of their acne scars or other skin conditions.

Skin care immediately after the surgery

As the skin thaws, bleeding begins. Various biologic and nonbiologic sterile dressings are used to stop the bleeding and cover the wound. The exact type and timing of the dressings varies from surgeon to surgeon.

Postoperatively, the dermabrasion surgeons may have an open or closed dressing system for the healing. Dermatologists have found that moist wounds heal faster than dry wounds. Vaseline (petrolatum) or an antibiotic ointment may be used postoperatively.

Generally a use of a hydrocolloid dressing is preferred which is changed daily for 5Ė7 days. This helps promote healing and re-epithelialization faster than normal wound healing.

It has been observed that some dermabrahydrocolloid dressings, such as Vigilon are the best for post-operative use as they reduce post-operative pain that is associated with dermabrasion, although the mechanism of this phenomenon is not fully understood.

Many dermatologists would recommend the use of additional medications, for the acne skin care including antiviral agents (at both pre- and post-procedure) and corticosteroids, if no contraindications exist. Adequate doses of each medicine should be given; exact doses and regimens have varied over the years.

Erythema (redness), edema (swelling), and crusting of the skin are seen for an average of 7 to 10 days. There is usually a tingling, burning, or aching in the operative area. If that is associated with pain, medications such as acetaminophen (paracetamol) with codeine may be used, if needed, for several days. The swelling will begin to subside in a few days to a week after the procedure, but it needs special skin care

If the patient has an open dressing system, he/she must be careful with the surgical area as it is now very tender and needs to heal. If yellow crusty areas appear, they should not be picked at or touched by anyone other than a physician. Touching the area constantly will hinder the healing and increases the chances of infection. The physician may also recommend certain compresses followed by an ointment four or five times a day post-surgery.

Post Operative Care after a week

Careful care with the bandage is an absolute priority. The dressing may need to be changed and sterile bandages and tape should be used every time. The cleaning of the site must also be as directed by the physician.

Skin of most patients starts re-epithelializing after 5Ė7 days of proper postoperative dressings and care. Some residual erythema for up to 4 weeks is common.

In the weeks following the dermabrasion surgery, the physician may choose to remove the bandage and apply a prescribed ointment. The physician will teach the patient how to care for the new skin after dermabrasion surgery ó how to clean and protect it.

As with any other surgery, there is a possibility of risk and complications of dermabrasion surgery as well, but such adverse events can be best avoided by assuring compliance with pre- and postoperative medicines and meticulous wound care.

A scab or crust will form over the treated area as it begins to heal. This will fall off as a new layer of tight, pink skin forms underneath. A patientís face may itch as new skin starts to grow from beneath. Use of an ointment is always recommended to stop the itching. If ointment is applied as per instructions, little or no scab is formed.

Post operative instructions at home

The surgeon gives detailed instructions for post operative acne skin care.. For men, this will include delaying shaving for a while, then using an electric razor at first.

A patient can expect mild skin redness even after going home, but this is very common. If the redness persists for ten days after the surgery, or if a patient notices the treated area beginning to get worse instead of better, there is cause for concern. If a patient notices the area to becoming increasingly raised and itchy after it has started to heal, it may be a sign that abnormal scars are beginning to form. Call your surgeon as soon as possible, so that treatment can begin early.

A scar may be forming and the physician can give cortisone injections to prevent the scar. Redness that is determined to be normal after dermabrasion surgery can be disguised with a green or yellow colored concealer or foundation. This can be done as long as the makeup does not irritate the new skin. The redness may last up to three months after dermabrasion surgery as the new skin emerges.

If the patient has had acne in the past, then a course of tetracycline may be prescribed after dermabrasion surgery to take care of the acne skin This will prevent future breakouts from impeding the healing process. It is also not recommended that the patient use the drug Retin-A for at least one month after dermabrasion surgery as a precaution for acne skin care. The skin is too new and too sensitive to be able to handle the strength of the medication. The healing process will take time after dermabrasion surgery, but it will definitely be worth the extra effort and wait.

Avoiding exposure to skin

Protecting the new skin after dermabrasion surgery will be the patientís top priority. Perhaps it was neglect that damaged the skin in the first place, so learning new habits to secure the new skinís appearance will help in the future. One of the biggest damagers to skin (both after dermabrasion surgery and before) is sunlight. It is the incidental sunlight that causes photo-aging to occur. That means that each time a patient goes out into the sun without sunscreen, he/she is damaging their skin, making it look older than it is.

Patients are expected to avoid going into the sun for the first post operative month and use sunscreens continuously thereafter.

Another good point to be aware of after dermabrasion surgery is that the eyes may need extra protection as well. The delicate skin around the eyes will need to be guarded by quality sunglasses and sunscreen as well.

With the new skin now exposed to the sun, wearing sunscreen is absolutely essential after the dermabrasion surgery. It is the only way that the patient will be protecting the new skin, otherwise it is very common for the skin to become blotchy or darkened in color.

Getting back to normal

The new skin that emerges after the surgery will be a bit swollen, sensitive, and bright pink for several weeks. But that should not prevent people from resuming their normal routine.

Slowly the redness will fade and the new skin will continue to look better and better. One is fit to go back to work within two weeks. Your surgeon will probably advise you to avoid any activity that could cause a bump to your face for at least two weeks. More active sports - especially ball sports - should be avoided for four to six weeks. If you swim, keep your face out of chlorinated water for at least four weeks.

Smoking and drinking alcohol are to be avoided at any cost. It will be at least three to four weeks before one can drink alcohol without experiencing a flush of redness. Smoking slows down wound healing.

Above all, it is important to fully protect the skin from the sun until the pigment has completely returned to the skin - the period can be as long as six to twelve months.

If there is a change in pigmentation after dermabrasion surgery, then bleaching creams may be used. The patient should work with their physician before attempting to even out the skin color on their own. The doctor will know best what your skin can handle after dermabrasion surgery. After a few weeks of care you are sure to have a younger looking skin and the better complexion.

Though dermabrasion may not cure all skin concerns, it can definitely help a person to look and feel at his/her best.

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