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What are some risks involved with skin peels?

Dr. Michael Roizen, MD
Internal Medicine
Any peel can cause scarring, and the deeper the peel, the more likely scarring will occur. If you have a tendency to scar, you shouldn't have peels deeper than the TCA peel. And the deeper peels can cause lightening of the skin, so if you have darker skin, there's danger in peels deeper than those that use glycolic acid. Make sure a doctor performs any peel using anything stronger than 10 percent glycolic acid; aestheticians and other assistants don't have enough knowledge to properly analyze skin and treat the occasional complications. Those plastic surgeons haven't quite figured out which of those lighter "non-ablative" lasers really do the trick. So, stay tuned; the technology of peels is still evolving.
You: Being Beautiful - The Owner's Manual to Inner and Outer Beauty

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You: Being Beautiful - The Owner's Manual to Inner and Outer Beauty

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The risks involved with skin peels or "chemical peels" include a small chance of developing scars or a slight change in skin color. Using birth control pills or becoming pregnant shortly after a chemical peel may increase the risks for pigmentation problems. In people who have a history of herpes outbreaks, a chemical peel may reactivate cold sores. You doctor may prescribe antiviral medication to minimize the risk of cold sores. Talk with your doctor or dermatologist about the risks involved with chemical peels.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.