Background: Both retinoid acid (RA) chemical peeling and microdermabrasion are minimally invasive procedures recently developed for the treatment of photoaging. The efficacy of each procedure has been proved, but the results of the combination of these two methods have not been studied until now.
Objectives: To assess and compare the efficacy of microdermabrasion followed by a 5% RA chemical peel with that of a 5% RA chemical peel alone.
Methods: Six female patients with moderate degrees of photodamage were evaluated. Three submitted to microdermabrasion followed by the application of a 5% RA chemical peel and three submitted to a 5% RA chemical peel alone. Each patient underwent three treatment sessions, with intervals of 7-10 days. Photographs were taken, and both biopsies and histological assessments were carried out, before treatment and 7 days after the final treatment session.
Results: In the opinion of the patients, in both groups there was improvement in the texture, pigmentation, and appearance of the treated skin, and this was confirmed with the assessment of the pre- and post-treatment photographs. The combination of microdermabrasion followed by a 5% RA peel showed slightly greater improvement in the histological alterations resulting from photoaging. Conclusion Both methods, microdermabrasion followed by a 5% RA chemical peel and a 5% RA chemical peel alone are effective in the treatment of photoaging.