Microneedling Key Word Glossary
Dermaroller– the generic term used to describe manually operated rollers. A dermaroller has needles oriented perpendicular to the roller surface. Depth of needles is varied by changing rollers with specified needle lengths.
Microneedling for Stretch Marks – Stretch marks result from shear forces on tightened skin. Stretch marks may result from pregnancy or other changes in the girth of limbs or the abdomen. Stretch marks or Striae Distensae, are tears to the connective tissue of the skin caused by rapid growth or over-stretching of the skin. When the connective tissue is stretched and tears, epidermal atrophy along the tear results. The epidermis becomes thin and loses it rete ridges. The elastic fibers break and retract. Stretch marks are a form of scarring similar to the healing after a wound separation or dehiscence, a process which reapproximates the stretched skin surfaces. Micro needling helps to thicken the skin over stretch marks restoring the contours of the epidermal surface.
Microneedling Frequency – Microneedling produces “fractional” micro-injuries to the epidermis and dermis. The healing, inflammation and collagenesis processes must take place for the benefits of microneedling to become evident. Collagenesis peaks at 14 days after treatment. Thus, a period of 14 – 30 days should elapse before a repeated microneedling treatment.
Microneedling and the FDA – Dermabrasion devices like the Dermapen are preamendment devices with indications for general dermabrasion, scar revision, acne scar revision, and tattoo removal. Dermabrasion devices are classified in 820 CFR 878.4800 as Class I devices and were exempted from premarket notification procedures in 1994.
Microneedling – How Often – The frequency of microneedling treatments vary with the intensity of the treatment. Mild treatments may be repeated every 2 to 4 weeks. Deep treatments for scars may be repeated every 4 to 6 weeks.
Microneedling for Scars – The principle use of Microneedling is for scar revision. Microneedling works on acne and traumatic scars. Microneedling mechanically breaks down the abnormally oriented and structured meshwork of collagen comprising the visible scar. Dermapen and other Microneedling methods triggers a new healing cascade which releases growth factors and chemotactic factors which attract keratinocytes and fibroblasts. New collagen is formed and hypotrophic scars are thickened to approximate the contours of normal skin.
Collagen Induction Therapy – A term coined by Dr. Mathias Aust based on the combined work of Drs. Orentreich, Fernades, Camirand, and Doucet. Collagen Induction Therapy describes the process by which the skin is punctured by needles causing the induction of new collagen formation. The natural posttraumatic inflammatory cascade is stimulated by thousands of controlled micro-wounds in the dermis. These wounds cause a superficial inflammation which ultimately results in an increase in dermal collagen.
Does Skin Needling Really Work – a large body of literature has explored the effect of skin needling, microneedling, or collagen induction therapy for a variety of skin pathophysiology. Skin needling has been found to be effective in remodeling scaring from burns, trauma, or acne. It has been successfully used for scarring due to stretch (Striae Distensae).
Before and After Microneedling – Photographs are presented to show the changes before and after microneedling.
Surgical Scar – Physiological process by which the incision is closed by the wound healing cascade causing migration of fibroblasts and subsequent collagen production.
Lip Wrinkles – Lip (perioral) wrinkles, also known as rhytides, are folds, ridges, or creases in skin resulting from the aging process or sun damage.
Protective Sun Screen – Sun screen or sun block is a topical product (gel, lotion, liquid) that absorbs or reflects part of the sun’s UV radiation. Protection from UV is quantitated by the Sun Protective Factor (SPF).
Rolling Scars – a type of acne scar characterized by a superficial rolling or undulating appearance. Rolling acne scars are caused by dermal tethering of relatively normal appearing skin. Rolling scars are usually 4 to 5 millimeters wide, and histologically there is abnormal fibrous anchoring of the dermis to the subcutis.
Dermapen Results – depend on the skin condition being treated. Results on surgical, acne, and burn scars have been well studied and are very encouraging. The effectiveness on fine lines and wrinkles, the indications for general dermabrasion, are also excellent.
Anti-Wrinkle Treatment – Microneedling or needle dermabrasion has been found to reduce wrinkles of the face and neck (Fabbrocini et al., 2011 and 2012).
Scar Remover – Dermapen microneedling has been found to lessen the visibility of acne scars (Fabbrocini et al., (2009; 2010); Fife (2011)) and burn scars (Aust et al (2010)).
Burn Scar Treatment – Microneedling or Collagen Induction Therapy has been shown to reduce the appearance of burn scars by 80%, with histologic evidence of increased collagen and elastin deposition and a 45% thickening of the dermis (Aust et al., 2010).
Numbing Gel – a topical anaesthetic which dulls the discomfort of skin based procedures. The numbing gel usually contains benzocaine, butamben, dibucaine, lidocaine, oxybuprocaine, pramoxine, proparacaine, proxymetacaine, teracaine.
Iontophoresis Facial Mask – a mask that delivers a microamp charge to the surface of the skin for the purposes of keeping topical agents in solution at the skin surface.
Boxcar Acne Scar – a type of scar resulting from acne characterized by round or oval scars with well established vertical edges. In cross section they have a “U” shape.
How to Cure Acne Scars – DermaPen’s microneedling effect reduces the contour of acne scars by building up the floor of the scar. This effect is related to the observed thickening of the epidermis after treatment. Most patients require three treatments separated by 4 weeks. Clinical results differ between patients but all achieve some improvement (Fabbrocini et al., 2010).
Phytoboost – The Phyto-Boost Recovery Gel is specifically formulated for microneedling treatments and helps to sooth and replenish the skin.
Dermapen Price – The Dermapen costs 20 to 40 times less than a fractional laser.
Acne Scar Tissue – scar tissue may be either atrophic (net loss of dermal thickness and collagen) or hypertrophic (net gain of dermal thickness and collagen). Eighty percent of acne scars are atrophic. Atrophic scars are classified based on gross morphology as ice pick, boxcar, or rolling scars.
Microdermabrasion – minimally invasive cosmetic procedure with almost 900,000 cases performed in 2007.