What Is It?

Subcision is a procedure in which a doctor uses a needle to probe under an acne scar, releasing the binding connections of the deeper tissues. This causes a controlled trauma underneath the scar that will lead to wound healing and the formation of new collagen, helping to even the sunken scar with the skin’s surface.

Good or Excellent Response

Strength of Evidence
13% of patients achieved a good (>50%) or excellent (>75%) improvement in scarring after 1 - 3 sessions

Moderate Response

Strength of Evidence
79% of patients achieved at least a moderate (>25%) improvement in scarring after 1 - 3 sessions
  1. Pravangsuk, J., Udompataikul, M., Cheyasak, N. & Kamanamool, N. Comparison of normal saline injection with pneumatic injector to subcision for the treatment of atrophic acne scars. J Clin Aesthet Dermatol 14, 50–55 (2021).
  2. Nilforoushzadeh, M. A. et al. Efficacy evaluation of Endolift-based subcision on acne scar treatment. J Cosmet Dermatol 20, 2579–2582 (2021).
  3. Nilforoushzadeh, M. A. et al. Comparing cannula-based subcision with the common needle method: a clinical trial. Skin Res Technol 26, 39–44 (2020).
  4. Kaur, M., Sharma, V. K., Sethuraman, G., Arava, S. & Gupta, S. A split-face randomized controlled study comparing the efficacy and safety of intralesional radiofrequency-assisted subcision vs conventional subcision in postacne scars. J Cosmet Dermatol 19, 1086–1092 (2020).
  5. Dhamale, S. A study to evaluate various upcoming therapies for acne scars: head on comparison. Clinical Dermatology Review 4, 128–135 (2020).
  6. Gheisari, M., Iranmanesh, B. & Saghi, B. Blunt cannula subcision is more effective than Nokor needle subcision for acne scars treatment. J Cosmet Dermatol 18, 192–196 (2019).
  7. Deshmukh, N. S. & Belgaumkar, V. A. Platelet-rich plasma augments subcision in atrophic acne scars: a split-face comparative study. Dermatol Surg 45, 90–98 (2019).
  8. Khedr, N. A. E.-A. A., Hussein, T. M. & El-Fatah, A. M. E.-S. A. Comparing the role of subcision suction method with and without the injection of platelet-rich plasma in the treatment of depressed scars. Journal of Surgical Dermatology 2, 88–97 (2017).
  9. Barikbin, B., Akbari, Z., Yousefi, M. & Dowlati, Y. Blunt blade subcision: an evolution in the treatment of atrophic acne scars. Dermatol Surg 43 Suppl 1, S57–S63 (2017).
  10. Nilforoushzadeh, M., Lotfi, E., Nickkholgh, E., Salehi, B. & Shokrani, M. Can subcision with the cannula be an acceptable alternative method in treatment of acne scars? Med Arch 69, 384–386 (2015).
  11. Al-Turfy, I. A., Mohammad, A.-A. S. & Al-Hammamy, H. R. Subcision in the treatment of acne scar in Iraqi patients. Journal of Cosmetics, Dermatological Sciences and Applications 5, 720–726 (2015).
  12. Al-Dhalimi, M. A. & Arnoos, A. A. Subcision for treatment of rolling acne scars in Iraqi patients: a clinical study. J Cosmet Dermatol 11, 144–150 (2012).
  13. Sage, R. J. et al. Subcuticular incision versus naturally sourced porcine collagen filler for acne scars: a randomized split-face comparison. Dermatol Surg 37, 426–431 (2011).
  14. Ramadan, S. A. E.-R., El-Komy, M. H. M., Bassiouny, D. A. & El-Tobshy, S. A. Subcision versus 100% trichloroacetic acid in the treatment of rolling acne scars. Dermatol Surg 37, 626–633 (2011).
  15. Vaishnani, J. B. Subcision in rolling acne scars with 24G needle. Indian J Dermatol Venereol Leprol 74, 677–679 (2008).
  16. Balighi, K., Robati, R. M., Moslehi, H. & Robati, A. M. Subcision in acne scar with and without subdermal implant: a clinical trial. J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol 22, 707–711 (2008).
  17. Alam, M., Omura, N. & Kaminer, M. S. Subcision for acne scarring: technique and outcomes in 40 patients. Dermatol Surg 31, 310–317; discussion 317 (2005).
  18. Fulchiero, G. J., Parham-Vetter, P. C. & Obagi, S. Subcision and 1320-nm Nd:YAG nonablative laser resurfacing for the treatment of acne scars: a simultaneous split-face single patient trial. Dermatol Surg 30, 1356–1359; discussion 1360 (2004).

Side Effects

Medium side effects and adverse reactions


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