Acne Scars

Archived Q&A and Reviews

related pages: Advice about Acne and Dermabrasion

June 2009

I have hyperpigmentation (dark scars) from acne and from aging. I know I look much older b/c of my uneven skin tone - I get a lot of ''you look tired!'' even after a good night's sleep! Can anyone recommend an esthetician/dermatologist who does microdermabrasion or any other treatment for that matter that would reduce the darkening? I did go to Dr. Bruzowski in Berkeley a year or so ago and just felt like she sold me things I actually didn't need for a lot of $$. I don't expect perfect just realistic improvement. Thanks so much! Always looking tired!

I have heard great things about Obagi treatments for acne scars and uneven skin. Although I haven't had the treatments, I have seen the following dermatologists in the area and can comment a bit on them:

Kathy Fang, El Cerrito -- Just saw her for the first time and thought she was fine, nice woman, and I did notice that they offer Obagi in her office. I'm sure she would do a good job.

David MacGregor in San Francisco is very good and seems to do quite a bit of cosmetic dermatology. I would highly recommend him. I moved and changed insurance, so I had to move on.

I used to see Jeffrey Bortz in Walnut Creek( years ago and LOVED him. He is very proactive and more picky about my skin and the way it looks than I am (a good quality in a dermatologist, if you ask me). I had more experience with him and therefore could give my highest recommendation. I don't see him now because his location is inconvenient for me and he doesn't take my insurance.

hope that helps! skin problems begone!

Jan 2008

A couple pregnancies have left their mark on my face. During the pregnancies, it seemed that every pimple I got left a scar even though I didn't mess with them. Now that my children are here, my skin has cleared up (in that I don't break out anymore) but I am left with a lot of acne scarring that I would love to get rid of. It's not deep pockmarks, more just like red spots. Who should I see for treatment? I don't know if this is something that one sees a dermatologist for or if an esthetician could do it? Any recommendations for a good practitioner? I'm not interested in getting sold a whole new line of facial products - I just want to get rid of the scars. I Want My Pre-Baby Face Back!

i see paige radell in oakland. she is an excellent dermatologist who i found through i saw her for my acne and all the marks that it left. even though she works w/ katie rodan (of proactive) fame, she didn't push any products on me. she worked with me to get a skincare plan just for me and within my budget. really, really liked her. her office number is 763-2662. a happy patient

April 2003

I have decided that I want to do something about the deep ice pick acne scars I have all over my face. I am looking for a recommendation for a practitioner, preferably in the east bay, and/or a recommendation on the method that will achieve the best results. I have done some research and it seems like the more severe methods, such as ablative laser resurfacing or dermabrasion, are required to reduce this type of scarring. Any recommendations on this in particular or on a plastic surgeon in general? I have read the archives but none of the advice or recommendations seemed to fit this situation. Thanks for any comments or advice you can give me!

I am a plastic surgeon practicing in Berkeley and have some information you might find helpful. Acne scarring can take two different forms, one is referred to as a crater and the other is what you have called ice pick. The crater scars are wider, shallow and usually rounder than the ice pick scars which tend to be smaller, sharp and deep. The crater scars are often treatable by deep resurfacing procedures, such as dermabrasion and laser or chemical peels, or with the injection of fillers such as collagen. However, the icepick scars are often too deep at the base to treat with resurfacing. These scars may be surgically removed, converting the ice pick to a small, carefully created and sutured linear scar.

If there are problems with dark spots where the acne was or with ongoing acne, different skin treatment regimens are available.

To specifically design a treatment plan to meet your needs, I would need to see you in person, but I hope this information helps. Elizabeth (see Elizabeth Lee recommendations)

The best person to help you with what and who your options are would be an excellent dermatologist who does not have a vested interest in what procedure you go with. (See Dermatologist Julie Billings for the rest of this review.)