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A Warning About Dermarollers....

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#1 Cade

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Posted 12 June 2012 - 07:19 AM

First time poster, I just wanted to warn people about my experiences with dermarollers.
I have had two dermaroller treatments and the second one effectively ruined my life.
It was carried out by Dr Chu in London nearly five years ago and my skin has still not healed.

Prior to this treatment I had only ever had mild but persistent acne over a long period of time, mostly isolated breakouts or just individual spots. These left some small acne scars which Dr Chu treated previously with subcision and isologen.

The derma roller felt like it shredded my skin beneath the surface, it has never felt the same to touch since, it lost its firmness and support. I knew it had been structurally damaged, though Dr Chu denied this.

I was later able to obtain proof via ultrasound scans. These showed a difference of 30% in my skin density between the area treated and the rest of my skin.

I’d had a perfectly healthy and even skin colour, but since the moment Dr Chu finished his treatment my face went red and has never returned to its natural colour. I was sent for six or seven IPL laser treatments but this just reduced the redness to a more pinkish colour.

I was also left with linear scarring up to 2cm long and lots of 'pinhole' scars on the area treated.


I was told by a private dermatologist I went to see recently that the reason he does not use dermarollers is that they are not proven to be medically safe. (Dr Chu told me the ‘best thing about this treatment is that there are no known side effects!’)

I stumbled upon this article published in the Mail Online last year which refers to 43 reported cases of 'bad reactions' to this treatment:
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2026700/Microneedle-Therapy-System-potentially-lethal-Chinese-women-warned.html

I can tell you from personal experience that this treatment is not safe. My advice to anyone who decides to go ahead with this procedure is to make sure you take close up photos of your skin before hand, as I have found out to my cost, if the doctor involved decides to try and deny responsibility you will find it very hard to get help from anyone.

The dermatologist I saw recently recommended ‘pulse dye laser’ to improve the skin tone and a radiofrequency (intracel) treatment to treat the loss of firmness in my skin, I am a little reluctant to put my skin through anything traumatic as it seems to have no ability to heal now.
Has anyone had any of these treatments? What is the recovery time usually?
Also, does anyone have any advice/ recommendations on treatment for pinhole scars?

Finally, if anyone knows of any reputable dermatologists or skin specialists they have seen, preferably in the London area, who they think may be able to help me I would be glad to hear from them.

I wouldn’t wish what happened to me on anyone and I will be happy to answer anyone’s questions about my experiences.

#2 Katie W

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Posted 12 June 2012 - 08:31 AM

INTRAcel would be a perfect treatment for your acne and acne scarring. Whilst it is micro-needling, the same as dermarollers, the machine applies the correct pressure, rather than relying on the pressure applied by your Doctor. Furthermore, it is combined with radio frequency energy to encourage collagen regrowth Whilst INTRAcel is a relatively new machine in the UK, it is clinically proven to assist with acne, acne scarring and skin-tightening - all the things it sounds like you need.

I have had an INTRAcel treatment and can vouch that there is no downtime (just redness and slight puffiness for 24 hours). If you choose a highly experienced Doctor you should achieve excellent results. Dr Natalie at Light Touch Clinic in Guildford (lighttouchclinic.co.uk/intracel.php) was the 3rd Clinic in the country to get INTRAcel and as a result is highly experienced. As Guildford is just 30 minutes from London you could always go and see her? Especially as she offers complimentary consultations.

Good luck

#3 girlie

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Posted 14 June 2012 - 01:43 AM

Hi James

So sorry for your bad experience.

Did you ever take the drug Accutane? as this drug impairs healing

#4 pumpkin21

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Posted 14 June 2012 - 03:24 AM

DermaPen will superseed dermaroller everywhere, had first treatment yesterday and it is sooooo much better !

#5 Jeopardy

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Posted 14 June 2012 - 07:22 AM

I am honestly sick of looking at the embarrassing patches of ice pick scars on both my cheeks... Can anyone recommend a product for me to try? Please. This is just too depressing. Whatever the product is, I can test try it on a small patch to gauge reaction.


Thank you!

#6 Cade

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Posted 14 June 2012 - 08:57 AM

Katie, thanks for your reply, I would be quite nervous about having Intracel, even a patch test, as my skin really has lost it's ability to heal. spots that used to clear in a day or two can take weeks to fully clear now. I would be worried about my skin not being able to heal from any treatment that causes an initial trauma.
girlie, I've never taken accutane, prior to this dermaroller treatment my face would always heal just fine.

#7 girlie

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Posted 16 June 2012 - 09:03 PM

hi james

did you moisturise your skin with vitamin A and C prior to dermarolling, at least 2 weeks prior???

Did you take supplements such as zinc, ample amounts of vit C for collagen repair???

#8 Tortuga

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Posted 16 June 2012 - 10:50 PM

I've done more than 5 dermaroller treatments since last year and I have not had any of these effects. Nothing negative.

you said you had this done 5 years ago. How long after that treatment did you first notice the negative effects?

#9 Cade

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Posted 17 June 2012 - 08:55 PM

girlie, I wasn’t told to do or take anything prior to treatment by Dr Chu and to this day none of the doctors or dermatologists I have seen since have recommended me taking vitamin C supplements. It was only a few weeks ago when I read that it may help skin heal that I have started taking some.


Tortuga, it was obvious after a couple of weeks that my skin was not healing, it was still red and I'd also been left with a thin white horizontal scar under my right eye which I noticed immediately.


I was certain too that the skin was structurally damaged. Every person knows what their own face feels like to touch; I told Dr Chu that my skin no longer felt the same. I had no way to quantify it but at the time I estimated the area he treated lost 60 to 70% of its firmness following his treatment.

It was only in November 2011 that I managed to get ultrasound scans done, the results showed a skin density reading of 40 for the area Dr Chu treated and a density reading of 52 for the rest of my skin!
I was told that these results should have been similar. They collate all results and compare yours against people of the same age. My normal skin density level is considered above average, the area Dr Chu treated is below average!

I’ve tried everything I can that’s supposed to help build collagen levels, Imedeen tablets and Dove Spa’s ‘strength within’. Beaute Pacifique make some big claims on their site about their creams, backed up with ultrasound ‘before and afters’, but my worry is that the damage done goes deeper than that.

I’d really like to speak to a skin specialist who understands skin structure and can pinpoint exactly what damage has been done. I don’t know if it’s possible for dermarollers to damage facial muscles but whatever happened was serious enough that my skin was not able to heal itself naturally.

Edited by James909, 17 June 2012 - 09:02 PM.


#10 Cade

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Posted 18 June 2012 - 10:05 AM

Nope, I really don't know what was damaged within the structure of my skin. I don't know what size dermaroller Dr chu used, I suggested to him it may have been damaged and that might explain the linear and punctuate scarring, 'I don't use damaged dermarollers' was all he said. He repeatedly refused to carry out any test or examination, even telling me that there wasn't any way to examine skin beneath the surface. It was through my own research that I discovered Dermascan which is designed specifically to measure skin density levels.
I only got the scans done to prove to the doctors and dermatologists I was seeing that my skin was structurally damaged, I knew it was damaged just by the feel.
It's difficult to explain but on the areas the Dermaroller was used it's very hard to grab and hold the skin between two fingers, it's like there's nothing underneath to grab onto. Yet once you try and grab the skin in areas that weren't treated, literally a centimetre away, it is much thicker and easier to hold onto.

#11 tricia

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Posted 18 June 2012 - 01:03 PM

I never had any similar problem with dermarolling either. I have kind of heard of similar things from fractionated laser, like loss of fat, even though they swear the lasers don't go that deep either. I wonder if you have fluid build up under the skin from the inflammatory response? Maybe you should be on something like prednisone. Your reaction sounds rare so you could have an autoimmune problem of the skin. I have been tested for lupus myself as I had abnormal swelling in scars, they just deemed it dermatitis, however, I tested negative for lupus. But later I doctor said you can still have the skin problem and not systemic so sometimes it is hard to detect it. Dermastamping individual scars is better in my opinion.

#12 Cade

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Posted 19 June 2012 - 07:36 AM

Tricia, I've never had any kind of autoimmune problems before, I'd had one dermaroller treatment previously and not suffered this reaction, also, I was sent for allergy tests that came back negative.

One thing that did interest me was your comment about lasers causing loss of fat, which was something I had never heard of before. It does sound similar to what happened to me (loss of firmness etc). But the reason I was sent for IPL was to treat the damage that had already been done by the dermaroller, the redness and the linear scarring appeared post dermaroller/pre-IPL.

Theres no doubt the IPL did reduce the redness, but reading peoples horror stories about IPL it does seem possible it also contributed to the damaged structure of my skin.

I'd assumed all along that the collagen level was damaged, which is why I've been using vitamin A creams and taking Imedeen tablets. I hadn't considered or been told of the possibility of 'fat loss'.

I've just started taking high strength vitamin C in tablet form, but would it be better to try the topical treatment? does anyone recommend a particular vitamin C serum that's worked for them?

I would really like to speak to a skin specialist who is trustworthy and knows their stuff, so if anyone has any recommendations of people they've seen they think may be able to help me, I would really appreciate hearing from them.

#13 Remicade

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Posted 19 June 2012 - 09:54 AM

This is the second case of dermarolling problems I have heard

Edited by Remicade, 19 June 2012 - 09:55 AM.


#14 tricia

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Posted 19 June 2012 - 12:25 PM

It will cost money but you could always search out a good plastic surgeon and get fat transfer to your face, it would definitely plump it back up but your face shape may change and the fat may not last as long as you like. I just don't see how a dermaroller could cause fat loss as it shouldn't be that long, ya know, and I assume your fat is located at the same depth as everyone elses. If you want to look at La Viv by Fibrocell that can help your body build back your own collagen. Just google providers. I have read many of the stories about laser causing fat loss and I do believe them but there is than unknown variable with the laser, like maybe the think backfired somehow or the doctor botched it. But a dermaroller seems pretty straight forward, the needles are just not that long.

I just re-read that you had undergone isolagen prior with Dr. Chu. That is now LaViv in US, so maybe it would help but you would have to travel.

Edited by tricia, 19 June 2012 - 12:35 PM.


#15 SoontobeMD

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Posted 19 June 2012 - 08:10 PM

Do you/have you smoked cigarrettes? Are you diabetic?

Both of these could signficantly impair your healing process.

#16 Cade

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Posted 20 June 2012 - 05:24 AM

never smoked, not diabetic, as mentioned in an earlier reply, prior to this treatment my skin would always heal.
The most upsetting thing is it was near perfect, this would probably have been my last treatment. I have copies of letters Dr Chu sent to my GP prior to this treatment stating 'James looks wonderful' and 'I'm finding it hard finding any scars to treat'!
The problems I had were trivial in comparison to now.

#17 dionner1234

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Posted 07 July 2012 - 07:08 AM

hi james i have had two derma roller treatemtns with dr chu, and this post is scaring me :( ... i have not got the really bad results u have got, but on the other hand i wouldnt say my skin has improved as of yet (but i know u need a good few treatments) ... i must say i feel like my better side of my face doesnt look that good :S ... there seems to be more scars, but i dont kow if thats in my head... i have heard good of dr chu and i just want to get an improvement :( x

#18 no_hope

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Posted 07 July 2012 - 06:32 PM


This is the second case of dermarolling problems I have heard


He drops a bit more info on it here: http://www.essential...ad.php?tid=4239
here. https://www.realself...ng-inflammation
here. http://www.skincell....e;topic=25534.0

They pretty much all read the same, but each one had a bit of information the last one didn't.

Do you see where im comming from now. This thread is just one of many i encountered where dermarolling ruined peoples skin.This indivdual got bad results in the hands of a so called ''professional''. Since you alrdy posted here, means you ARE aware of the fact that dermarolling can cause damage. Now im really starting to wonder what you are up to by trying to convince people to dermaroll. something is fishy here.....

To james909 i am truly srry for what hapened to you. i wish you can sue that basterd for what he did to you, Only if you was warned before treatment about the dangers of dermarolling....

#19 Nope.avi

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Posted 07 July 2012 - 06:47 PM

.

Edited by Nope.avi, 08 August 2012 - 07:53 PM.


#20 natural1

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Posted 25 October 2012 - 09:50 AM

James, thanks so much for the Dermaroller warning, and I'm sorry to hear about your experience. I know it's been a few months since you wrote in, but I just found your comments and had some ideas for you in case you check back in.

First, my personal feeling is that I would avoid any other mechanical therapies for your skin at this time. By mechanical, I mean therapies that would peel, puncture, or otherwise cause sudden changes in the structure of your skin that it would need to repair.

Second, from what I recall on the original Dermaroller website, this instrument works by causing minute damage to the collagen underlying the skin. It is the skin's efforts to repair that damage that rebuilds collagen, and in doing so, it corrects scar tissue and provides other benefits.

Based on that, is it possible that the Dermaroller caused some type of unusual damage to your skin’s collagen versus the fat layer? If so, maybe you could try some natural, gentle therapies to rebuild that collagen. I would recommend that you talk to certified natural health practitioners, such as herbalists, naturopaths, homeopaths, and those knowledgeable in aromatherapy/essential oil. I have used natural therapies sucessfully for a wide variety of conditions for many years, and I think it may offer some good options for you. Here are a couple of examples you could consider, but please ask a certified natural health practitioner before using them.

Rose Hip Essential Oil – For external use only. This oil has lots of Vitamin C and is known for rebuilding collagen in the skin and reducing scarring. The Vitamin C would also help your skin improve its ability to heal. I don’t know if you would need to dilute it in a carrier oil or not. Ask your natural health practitioner, and try it on a small patch of skin that did not receive the Dermaroller for a week first. (There are also other essential oils that have similar actions.)

Stinging Nettle Herb – This herb helps rebuild tissues in the body. I don’t know that it’s ever been used for this purpose, but it would definitely be looking into. This can be taken internally as a tea, and you can also make it into a separate tea that you let cool and then dab with a cotton ball gently on your skin externally every day. Again, I would try it on a small test patch for a week first. (There are also other herbs that may be able to help with scarring that you can ask your natural health practitioner/s about.)

Hope this helps.




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