Top 5 Acne Surgery Options: A Word Of Caution
Acne is a common skin condition that causes swelling. It affects nearly 90% of teens around the world, and it can also happen to adults. Treatment usually depends on what kind of acne you have and how bad it is, but it usually includes both topical and oral medicines to help ease symptoms. When medications aren’t enough or don’t work, a doctor may suggest surgery as an alternative to the main treatment.
Some people with acne scars may need surgery in addition to getting treatment for the acne itself. Excision, laser surgery, and injections are all possible choices. Even though these treatments can help make your skin look better, they also have risks and can make your skin feel bad.
This article talks about different kinds of acne surgery and gives advice for people with acne-prone skin.
Can surgery treat acne?
Even though more research needs to be done, there is some evidence that physical methods, like acne surgery, can be effective acne treatments, especially for acne that doesn’t respond to other treatments. But most dermatologists will usually start with topical and oral medications, and they may also think about surgery as a second option.
There are different kinds of acne surgery. The type a doctor suggests will depend on the person’s medical history and the kind of acne they have. Many of the procedures can be done in the office of a dermatologist.
Scarring from acne is a common problem that many people may have, especially if they wait too long to get treatment for active acne. There is evidence that surgical treatments are a good way to get the cosmetic results you want. A 2020 study says that it is hard to get rid of acne scars completely, but that combining different treatments can help people with different skin tones get better results.
Who Should Undergo Acne Surgery?
Acne surgery can be used to treat both active acne and scars left over from acne.
Acne surgery is sometimes used as a supplement to medical treatment for acne that is still active. This is especially true in severe or complicated cases where medical treatment isn’t enough or doesn’t work. The goal is to treat acne that is already happening and make sure that the skin heals completely and correctly, no matter what caused it.
Acne surgery can also be used to make acne scars look better and get rid of them for good.
1. Blemish Excision
Some spots are more stubborn than others and don’t want to respond to the medicines your doctor has given you. In this case, your dermatologist may decide that getting rid of the spot will help. Most people think of excision when they hear the word “acne surgery.”
In blemish excision, a small cut is made in the skin to drain pus and dead skin from a pimple. This is a simple procedure that is done in an office.
You will stay awake for the whole time. The doctor or nurse may use a numbing agent to help stop the pain and make you feel better.
The blemish should start to heal once the pus and comedone core are gone. The procedure itself may leave a small scar, so you and your doctor will need to decide if this is the best way to treat you.
2. Blemish Extractions
Blemish extractions are used to get rid of blackheads and whiteheads that aren’t inflamed (also known as milia). Pustules that are full of pus can also be drained with an extraction.
This procedure doesn’t have to be done in a hospital like blemish excision. An esthetician can help you get your pores cleaned out at your local salon or day spa. Since extractions aren’t too painful, you don’t need any kind of numbing medicine or painkiller.
Most of the time, exfoliation is done before blemish extractions to get rid of dead skin cells. The esthetician will then gently squeeze or press the pimple with a metal tool called a comedone extractor.
Even if a pimple is cut out or pulled out, it can still come back. They only work on spots that are already there. You’ll still need to take medicine to treat acne to get rid of breakouts.
These are things that should be done by doctors and nurses. Don’t ever try to pierce and drain a spot, no matter how small it is. You put yourself at risk of getting sick, and you could easily get scars on your skin.
3. Laser Surgery
Laser treatments come in many different forms. The best type for you depends on many things, such as your skin type and color, and what you want to achieve.
During a laser treatment, a pulse of light with a high level of intensity is sent to the skin. Depending on the treatment, a laser can reduce inflammation and acne-causing bacteria, help existing pimples heal, and help the skin renew itself.
Acne and acne scars can both be treated with lasers. Some lasers only need one treatment to get the job done, while others need a few. Laser treatments are expensive, and most insurance plans don’t cover them.
4. Chemical Peels
Chemical peels are exactly what they sound like: they peel off the top layer of skin to make it better. These peels gently remove dead skin cells and don’t require any downtime, though your skin may be a little pink afterward. For mild acne, the best treatment is a light peel.
At your dermatologist’s office, you can get chemical peels that are stronger, have a medium depth, or are deep. There are also various kinds of chemical peels. Your dermatologist will help you decide which one is best for your skin.
Chemical peels use a substance (like glycolic acid, salicylic acid, or trichloroacetic acid) that is left on the skin for a while to remove the top layer. This makes the skin start to heal, which starts the remodeling process.
Over the next few days or weeks, your skin will start to flake or “peel,” revealing the new skin underneath. Chemical peels can be used to treat both acne and scars, just like laser treatments can.
5. Intralesional Injections
Intralesional corticosteroid injections, which most people just call “cortisone injections,” are also sometimes grouped with acne surgery. Cortisone injections are used to help get rid of big, swollen spots on the skin. It is the same thing that is done to treat painful, swollen joints.
A small amount of cortisone is put right into a pimple by a dermatologist. The needle used is very small, but it sounds worse than it is. In a few hours, the spot goes away.
Cortisone injections are not a first-line treatment for acne. Instead, they are used when other treatments don’t work on a large pimple.
Even when you’re done, you’ll still have to use a regular acne treatment to get rid of the problem.
These professional acne treatments can help you get started with your acne treatment routine or add to it. But in most cases, you should think of these procedures as an addition to your acne treatment, not as the only acne treatment.
Talk to your dermatologist if you’re interested in any of these acne surgery options to see if they would be a good addition to your treatment plan. Just remember that these aren’t miracle cures for acne; they’re just another tool that your dermatologist can use to treat it.
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