The Latest in Skin Revitalization
Medical Microneedling is a relatively new treatment option in Cosmetic Dermatology.
Laser skin resurfacing has long been considered to be the gold standard for the treatment of wrinkled, photoaged, or scarred skin, and remains so in some circumstances. But a new treatment is making its way into the picture. Microneedling is an excellent alternative for patients who want to rejuvenate their skin without the downtime typically associated with more invasive laser procedures.
What is Microneedling?
Sometimes referred to as Percutaneous Collagen Induction Therapy (PCIT), Microneedling is the process of gently puncturing the skin with tiny medical-grade stainless steel sterile needles. This creates controlled micro-wounds under the skin’s surface and triggers the release of various growth factors resulting in the development of new collagen and elastin. The procedure is done by a certified professional using a hand-held Microneedling device and can be done on the face, neck and décolleté.
You can expect the following from a Microneedling procedure:
- Minimally invasive
How Will Microneedling Benefit Your Skin?
The microchannels and controlled injury created during a Microneedling treatment stimulate the skin’s natural healing process (inflammation, proliferation and remodelling). The after effects of Microneedling is fresh, glowing skin with a natural glow. Look and feel younger and healthier in just one session.
Benefits of Microneedling:
- Reduces fine lines and wrinkles
- Improves skin elasticity
- Minimizes enlarged pores
- Exfoliates the skin
- Improves the appearance of age spots
- Reduces the appearance of acne scars
- Reduces the appearance of stretch marks
- Improves overall skin texture
In addition to these benefits, Microneedling enables transdermal delivery of various topical skin enhancers. The most popular skin enhancers, used in conjunction with Microneedling treatments, are growth factors serum, stem cell serums, Vit A and C serums and hyaluronic acid serums.
Hyaluronic acid serums are primarily used in patients looking for a plumping and hydrating effect due to the amazing ability of each hyaluronic acid molecule to retain water and moisturize the skin from within.
Vit A and C are well known to be vital in the production of new collagen and protection of existing collagen. Combining Microneedling with topical antioxidants have shown to enhance the regenerative process of Microneedling-induced wound healing and increase the epidermal thickness by 140% versus using these antioxidants alone. Treating the skin with antioxidants before your Microneedling can improve the skin’s rejuvenation effect.
- 15 Years of Experience – Our Microneedling specialist is a fully trained medical aesthetician with over 15 years of experience in skin care and cosmetic dermatology technologies.
- Certified Microneedling Technician – Our Microneedling specialist is 100% certified.
- Health Canada Approved Microneedling Pen – Our Microneedling pen is Health Canada approved. Many facilities use micro-pens which do not hold the same certification. They may tell you it doesn’t matter, but as a licensed physician, Dr. Tosoni strives to offer the safest and best of all equipment.
- Medical Supervision – A physician on-site medically supervises all Microneedling procedures.
- Prescription Numbing Gel for Your Comfort – The numbing gel we use to prepare your skin is a prescription numbing cream that is only available to physicians. It is stronger and acts faster. This translates into a shorter appointment time and more importantly a much more comfortable treatment.
- Medical-Grade Skin Care Serums – All serums or skin enhancers used during your Microneedling treatment in our office are from medical-grade skin care line all which are only available at a physician’s office.
- Anti-Viral Remedies – If you have a history of cold sores, Dr. Tosoni will be able to prescribe the required anti-viral medication.
- Professional Medical Assessment of Your Skin – If there is any questionable skin lesion on the area to be treated, questions about contraindications or health-related issues Dr. Tosoni will be able to assess and recommend appropriate measures.
- Professionally Administered Treatments Just for You – Physician supervised Microneedling technicians are allowed to treat deeper than non-physician supervised facilities, permitting to treat a broader range of skin issues.
- Here for You, Always – If any issues arise following your Microneedling treatment, Dr. Tosoni is available for your follow-up.
What to Expect During Your Microneedling Appointment?
A full face Microneedling treatment will typically be done in 30 minutes, neck in 20 minutes and chest also in about 20 minutes.
The end treatment goal is to achieve mild pin-point bleeding in the treatment zones.
The four stages of Microneedling are:
- The first step is to cleanse the skin to remove all makeup or residual skin debris with a gentle cleanser. Then a potent prescription strength numbing cream will be applied to your skin and left on for 15-20 minutes. This will ensure you are comfortable during the procedure. The numbing cream will then be removed with sterile, water-soaked gauze and your skin will be prepped with alcohol. Now you’re ready for your Microneedling treatment!
- A few drops of either hyaluronic acid, growth factor serum, stem cell serum or antioxidants will be applied to your skin. The one best suited for your skin type will be determined at the time of your appointment.
- Next, a disposable needle tip, containing 12 tiny sterile needles will be attached to the medical grade MicroPen. This pen can adjust the depth of the needles from 0.1 to 2mm, allowing us to have complete control when customizing your Microneedling treatment.
- Our medical aesthetician will gently start Microneedling your skin in a linear, oblique, and circular fashion, repeating approximately three to six times or until fine pinpoint bleeding is observed. The depth of the procedure will be adjusted according to the needs of the area that is being treated as well as the thickness of the skin. This pen was designed to be easily maneuvered on all skin surfaces, curves, and facial or neck contours. It is powerful enough to treat scars yet can be adjusted to much milder settings to treat delicate areas such as the eyes, lips and nose.
Microneedling Treatment Protocol
Visible changes to the skin will develop over several days to weeks after your first treatment.
It is recommended for most patients to do a series of three to four treatments spaced four weeks apart.
However, to achieve optimal improvement of deeper wrinkles, scars, stretch marks or more advanced photoaged skin changes, the recommended treatment protocol is to receive a series of six to eight Microneedling sessions at six-week intervals.
Many patients will opt for a semi-annual or annual maintenance treatment to maintain their results and keep their skin looking fresh and healthy.
Contraindications to Microneedling treatments are limited but include inflammatory acne, active herpes labialis (cold sores) or other local infections within the treatment area, keloidal predisposition and immunosuppression. Additional care should be taken with concomitant Microneedling near Botox, Dysport or Xeomin injection sites to avoid potential unwanted neurotoxin diffusion.
Patients may continue the use of their home skin care regimen (including retinoids, antioxidants, and growth factors) up until 24 hours before the time of the procedure. Oral anticoagulants should not be discontinued as the risk of uncontrollable bleeding during the Microneedling treatment.
Although any skin colour can be treated, it is recommended that treatment is delayed in patients with a history of recent direct sun exposure (or who are visibly tanned) until their suntan has sufficiently faded. This precaution is taken to avoid post-treatment pigmentation changes in your skin.
Individuals with a history of cold sores may be at increased risk for viral reactivation during the post-treatment period. If you have a history of cold sores, make sure to inform Dr. Tosoni when booking your appointment or during your consultation as she will prescribe oral antiviral therapy (Valtrex or Famcyclovir) as a prophylactic measure (beginning on the day before your treatment) to minimize the possibility of this complication.
Microneedling should not be done over any active inflammatory acneiform lesions as it may predispose the patient to the development of bacterial microabscesses or granulomas.
Post Procedure Recommendations
With Microneedling, downtime is minimal. Most patients experience redness for only one day. On the second day, your skin will be noticeably improved, showing just a slight pink hue.
For the first four hours after your procedure, you will be instructed to apply the provided sample of hyaluronic acid gel or other serum to your skin. After four hours, a 1% hydrocortisone cream or a non-allergenic moisturizing cream can be applied to the treatment regions two to four times daily for two to three days. The use of a nonchemical (or physical) sunblock with SPF 30 or higher is advocated (on top of the moisturizer) during the first post-treatment week.
Application of makeup may be resumed two days after the procedure.
Active skin care products that you were using pre-treatment can be resumed in three to five days when all traces of skin erythema have resolved.
Microneedling treatment sessions are generally recommended in monthly intervals until the desired clinical results are achieved. Some patients elect to receive ongoing (single) Microneedling treatment sessions on an annual or semi-annual basis to enhance and maintain their cosmetic outcomes.
Side Effects of Microneedling
Most patients can return to their daily activities immediately following their treatments. The total healing time will vary depending on the emphasis and depth of the procedure. The most common side effects of treatment include mild erythema, localized edema, and skin flaking. These typically resolve untreated within 48 to 72 hours. Some will completely heal in as little as 24 hours. When pinpoint bleeding is observed during the treatment, it is self-limited and resolves within minutes after the procedure with the application of gentle manual pressure and ice water-soaked gauze.
Microneedling is a safe, minimally invasive, and effective aesthetic treatment option for numerous dermatologic conditions including scaring, wrinkles, and stretch marks. It’s also an excellent treatment for skin rejuvenation. With such a fast post-treatment recovery, limited side effect profile, and impressive clinical results, Microneedling is a valuable alternative to more invasive procedures such as laser skin resurfacing and deep chemical peels and becoming a favourite treatment option among many patients.