Clinical Study: Peeling and Needling Acne Scars

A clinical study reported last month (March 2012) compared two acne scar treatments: deep peeling using phenol and PCI (Percutaneous Collagen Induction, also known as micro needling or rolling) combined with 20% trichloroacetic acid (TCA).

One group (let's call them Group A) of subjects had one (1) phenol peel; the other group (Group B) had four (4) sessions of PCI (micro needling) combined with a 20% TCA peel. After the study, the patients rated their own scar improvement with a percentage.

Group A with the single phenol peel believed that their scars improved by just over 75% whereas Group B with the four TCA peels combined with needling believed their scars improved by just under 70%.

Although it seems clear that both of these acne scar treatments were highly effective to the participants, it appears to me that one phenol peel would be much easier than four sessions of rolling combined with 20% TCA peels. Sigh

I’ve never seen phenol acid available for purchase to non-licensed individuals, and that’s probably for a good reason. Fortunately, similar results (as found in the study) can be achieved with rolling and 20% TCA peels.

In addition, microneedle devices used for needling may also help deliver more of the active ingredients in serums, according to this clinical study. Needling is nothing new; people have been doing this for years now, but it's nice to see studies that corroborate what we read on product advertisements.

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