Chemical Peels

The Albuquerque Center for Plastic Surgery has a complete line of skin care treatments and products. We customize each treatment based on our patient’s needs as determined by our licensed skin Aesthetician. All of our skin treatments are results oriented, using the most effective products available through a doctor. Chemical peels can be altered from mild to aggressive, depending upon your skin condition and the desired results.

A Chemical Peel uses a chemical solution to improve and smooth the texture of the facial skin by removing its damaged outer layers. It is helpful for those individuals with facial blemishes, wrinkles and uneven skin pigmentation. Chemical peeling may also remove pre-cancerous skin growths, soften acne facial scars and even control acne. Trichloroacetic acids (TCA) are used for this purpose. The precise formula used may be adjusted to meet each patient’s needs.

Trichloroacetic (TCA) acid can be used in many concentrations, but it is most commonly used for medium-depth peeling. Fine surface wrinkles, superficial blemishes and pigment problems are commonly treated with TCA. More than one peel may be needed to achieve the desired result.

With a TCA peel, your healed skin will be able to produce pigment as always; the peel will not bleach the skin. However, TCA peel patients are advised to avoid sun exposure for several months after treatment to protect the newly formed layers of skin. Even though TCA is milder than some peels, it may also produce some unintended color changes in the skin, including areas of increased or decreased pigment.

Anesthesia isn’t required for TCA peels because the chemical solution acts as an anesthetic. A full face TCA peel usually takes no more than 15 minutes. Two or more TCA peels may be needed to obtain the desired results, and those may be spaced out over several months. Mild TCA peels may be repeated as often as every month.

The moderate discomfort and mild swelling you may experience will subside within the first week. In about a week to ten days, your new skin will be apparent and you should be healed sufficiently to return to normal activities. It is best to avoid sun exposure unless you are adequately protected, to maximize the results of the peel.

Complications are rare – but must be thoroughly discussed and considered before you decide to have surgery.

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