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ASDS Guidelines Task Force: Consensus Recommendations Regarding the Safety of Lasers, Dermabrasion, Chemical Peels, Energy Devices, and Skin Surgery During and After Isotretinoin Use

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Abstract

BACKGROUND

Currently, the isotretinoin (13-cis-retinoic acid) package insert contains language advising the discontinuation of isotretinoin for 6 months before performing cosmetic procedures, including waxing, dermabrasion, chemical peels, laser procedures, or incisional and excisional cold-steel surgery. It is common practice to follow this standard because of concerns regarding reports of sporadic adverse events and increased risk of scarring.

OBJECTIVE

To develop expert consensus regarding the safety of skin procedures, including resurfacing, energy device treatments, and incisional and excisional procedures, in the setting of concurrent or recent isotretinoin use.

MATERIALS AND METHODS

The American Society for Dermatologic Surgery authorized a task force of content experts to review the evidence and provide guidance. First, data were extracted from the literature. This was followed by a clinical question review, a consensus Delphi process, and validation of the results by peer review.

RESULTS

The task force concluded that there is insufficient evidence to justify delaying treatment with superficial chemical peels and nonablative lasers, including hair removal lasers and lights, vascular lasers, and nonablative fractional devices for patients currently or recently exposed to isotretinoin. Superficial and focal dermabrasion may also be safe when performed by a well-trained clinician.

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