Microneedling, also known as collagen induction therapy, is an FDA-approved skin rejuvenation treatment that can correct a number of cosmetic concerns. Today, our skincare experts at Galanis Plastic Surgery in Beverly Hills, CA are discussing everything you need to know about this treatment, including what it is, how it works, and who it is right for.
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What Is Microneedling?
Microneedling is a safe, effective way to restore your skin health by kickstarting its natural healing process. Thanks to the FDA-approved dermal roller we use, dozens of microchannels are created in your epidermis and dermis.
How Long Does Treatment Take?
Your collagen session may only take between 25 and 30 minutes depending on the scope of your treatment. If you are treating a large area and your cosmetic concerns are severe, your session may take closer to an hour.
This is because the device needs to be passed over your skin more times the more extensive your skin damage is. During your initial consultation, we will assess the extent of your skin damage to advise you on how long your session should take. Also, you may benefit from microneedling with PRP.
Collagen Induction Therapy Vampire Facial
If you have severe skin damage, a microneedling vampire facial may be right for you. This treatment combines the power of collagen induction therapy with the power of platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy. Combining these two treatments is ideal because the platelets in your plasma also facilitate significant skin healing.
If you opt for a vampire facial in addition to your collagen induction therapy, your session will take a little longer. First, a bit of blood needs to be drawn from your arm. Then, it needs to be processed in a centrifuge for several minutes to separate its components, such as platelets, by mass. Once your blood components are separated by mass, your platelets will be combined with the plasma and applied to your face.
Does This Treatment Hurt?
No, you will not experience any pain during your therapy session.
How It Works
This treatment works by penetrating the fibroblasts in your dermis dozens of times with tiny sterile needles. The microchannels created by the dermal rolling device are so small they are invisible to the naked eye, but your skin responds to them by increasing blood flow to the area and producing more collagen. Collagen is an essential protein that facilitates your skin healing itself, resolving everything from freckles and wrinkles to hyperpigmentation and wrinkles.
Also, the tiny microchannels created by the sterile needles encourage your skin to produce extra elastin. Elastin is a crucial supportive fiber that helps to prevent the formation of new wrinkles.
The Three Stages of Healing
Your skin will go through three stages of healing in response to collagen induction therapy. These stages are known as the inflammatory, proliferation, and remodeling stages.
The Inflammatory Stage
The first stage of healing that occurs in response to this treatment starts during the therapy session itself. As the dermal roller glides gently over your skin at a 45-degree angle, your epidermis or dermis is punctured dozens of times. This triggers a significant cytokine release by the platelets in the treatment area thanks to your immune system jumping into action. Also, the platelets release human growth factors and other growth factors in addition to cytokine.
The Proliferation Stage
The proliferation stage is the second stage of healing and takes place immediately following your treatment. This stage can last anywhere from four to six weeks. During this stage, damaged skin cells are being repaired thanks to an increase in collagen, skin is tightening in response to an increase in elastin, and dead skin cells are being replaced by young, living skin cells.
The Remodeling Stage
The third and final stage of the healing process is the remodeling stage. During this stage of healing, your skin has finished producing extra collagen and elastin in response to the creation of microchannels. At this point, you will notice that your skin is bright, tight, and smooth. This stage lasts for roughly six months. After approximately half of a year, a follow-up session will be necessary to restore your ideal results.
How Quickly It Works
Collagen induction therapy starts working immediately, but it will take a while for your final results to become apparent. How long it will take you to see your final results depends on how quickly your skin can produce extra collagen in response to the treatment and how many sessions you will need to achieve your ideal results.
In some cases, it may be several months before you see your final results. This is because treatment sessions are scheduled four to six weeks apart. If you need six sessions to achieve your ideal results, you schedule your sessions four weeks apart, and it takes your skin four weeks to respond fully to your treatment, it will be seven months before your cosmetic concerns are erased in full.
How Many Sessions You Will Need to Achieve Your Ideal Results
The number of sessions you will need to achieve your ideal results depends on the cosmetic concerns you are trying to treat and their severity. If you are trying to unclog your pores and shrink enlarged pores, you will only need one quick treatment session.
On the other hand, if you have cosmetic concerns that are moderate in nature, you may need a few treatment sessions. Similarly, if you are trying to eliminate certain types of scars, like surgical scars or acne scars, you may need half of a dozen treatments.
Who Is This Right for?
Microneedling is right for virtually everyone because it is incredibly safe and can treat such a wide range of skin concerns. Also, it is FDA-approved for adults regardless of skin type, texture, or tone. Here are some signs this treatment is appropriate for you.
You’re Worried About Acne
If you’re plagued by frequent acne outbreaks, there is a very good chance that collagen induction therapy is right for you. This treatment is great for people who are prone to acne outbreaks because it unclogs the pores. Once your pores are unclogged, topical anti-acne treatments will be much more effective.
Also, collagen induction therapy can encourage your sebaceous glands to produce less sebum, further mitigating the risk of whitehead and blackhead outbreaks.
You’re Worried About Wrinkles
This treatment may also be right for you if you are worried about wrinkles. To reiterate, this treatment induces extra collagen production in the treatment area, and some types of wrinkles are caused by volume loss. Since collagen volumizes your skin, extra localized collagen production will erase volume loss-related wrinkles.
You’re Worried About Acne ScarsThe extra collagen production that occurs in response to this treatment can also be used to erase acne scars. This is because collagen helps the skin heal itself through the facilitation of cellular turnover. In other words, damaged skin cells, including those damaged by acne, are replaced with healthy cells.
You’re Worried About Dull Skin or Hyperpigmentation
Another sign this treatment is right for you is you are worried about dull skin. Cellular turnover leads to healthy skin cells replacing all damaged skin cells, not just scarred skin cells. Therefore, after this treatment, skin cells that are dull or ruddy will be replaced with radiant, healthy skin cells. Regardless of whether you are concerned about redness or dullness, you will benefit greatly from just one collagen induction therapy treatment.
Who This Treatment Isn’t Right for
While this treatment is right for almost everyone, there are some who don’t qualify for this treatment. You need to be fairly healthy to receive this treatment, so we need to discuss your medical history and current health.For instance, this treatment may not be appropriate for you if you have a history of keloid scars, suffer from chronic plaque psoriasis, or regularly get atopic
dermatitis outbreaks. Also, you should hold off on this treatment if you have recently received radiation therapy, have skin irritation at the treatment site, or are pregnant.
Restore Your Skin Health and Beauty Naturally
You don’t have to undergo invasive procedures to improve your skin health and beauty. Your skin can repair itself; it just needs a little encouragement. Microneedling will give your skin the small push it needs to produce extra collagen and rejuvenate itself. It may take between one and seven months, but achieving radiant, smooth, healthy skin is possible with collagen induction therapy.
Microneedling Vampire Facial
These microscopic wounds serve two purposes:
- To stimulate the body’s own healing mechanism which includes the production of collagen. Collagen, which decreases with aging, is a crucial building block of a firm and radiant skin.
- To allow better penetration of products designed to rejuvenate skin (such as specially designed skin rejuvenating serums, platelet-rich plasma also known as “PRP”, etc.)
It is important to draw the distinction between microneedling performed by Dr. Galanis and the commercially available “ dermarollers ” that can be used by patients at home or by aestheticians. Commercially available dermarollers generally only penetrate to a depth of 0.5mm or less. The device used by Dr. Galanis can achieve depths up to 2.5mm. This greater depth leads to greater efficacy – a fact which has been supported by scientific study. Dr. Galanis performs all micro needling procedures himself so that he can customize each treatment to the patient’s goals and skin type.
PRP and The "Vampire Facial"
As referenced above, PRP can be combined with microneedling for what has been termed the “vampire facial.” A small amount of blood is drawn from the patient and the PRP is isolated for use. PRP contains high concentrations of stem cells, growth factors, and platelets. Traditionally this has been used in used in other areas of medicine such as orthopedic surgery to help speed healing. Now it is being applied to cosmetic dermatology to rejuvenate and heal damaged or aging skin by stimulating collagen and elastin. It is, therefore, the ideal companion to microneedling which can help deliver the PRP to where it is most effective: deep into the skin.
Who Is A Candidate
MICRONEEDLING CAN BE USED FOR ALL SKIN TYPES ALTHOUGH SHOULD BE AVOIDED IN PATIENTS WITH EXTENSIVE ACNE. BENEFITS INCLUDE:
- Improve fine lines and wrinkles
- Reduce acne scars
- Soften or reduce stretch marks
- Even skin tone
- Decrease sun spots or other areas of darkened skin
- Reduce the appearance of pores
- Smooth and firm skin texture
- Scar treatment
MICRONEEDLING IS NOT INTENDED FOR:
- Reduce acne scars
A numbing cream is first applied to the face and given 10-20 minutes to take maximum effect. For patients who elect for PRP treatment, blood is drawn. This blood is then placed in a centrifuge to isolate the platelet rich plasma for use. For patients who decline PRP, a skin serum with skin nutrients is used during the treatment. The microneedling is then performed and typically takes 20-30 minutes depending on area treated. The duration of the procedure is the same whether PRP or skin serum is used.
Dr. Galanis performing a microneedling treatment in his Beverly Hills office.
If you would like to learn more about microneedling or “Vampire Facial” treatments, please fill out our contact form and we will be happy to assist you! Alternatively, you can call to schedule a consultation to see Dr. Galanis in Beverly Hills (310-858-8930).
- Recovery: expect 2-3 days of redness in treated areas. makeup/concealer may be applied the day after treatment.
- Pain: minimals; topical creams are used routinely.
- Activity/shower/driving restrictions: no restrictions
- Time off work: may return to work immediately
- Follow-up: Dr. Galanis personalizes the follow-up plan based on the treatment plan.
Dr. Galanis recommends a minimum of 3 treatments spaced apart by at least 4 weeks for optimum effect although benefits can be appreciated after a single treatment? As we age, maintenance therapy may also be appropriate.