Beauty

The Latest Breakthroughs Dermatologists Are Talking About

Every year, the nation’s foremost board-certified dermatologists convene at the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery meeting to explore cutting-edge innovations. The breakthroughs at ASDS 2023 set the standard for what we ultimately incorporate into our routines in the coming years. We got a sneak peak at the latest treatments poised to revolutionize how we anti-age and enhance.

New Wrinkle Relaxers

The show was abuzz with news of new neurotoxins, including a faster-acting injectable wrinkle reducer an a topical version. “I would say one of the hottest topics are the new toxins that are coming to market,” shared Santa Monica, CA dermatologist Ava Shamban, MD. “A liquid formula from Derma and a fast acting toxin called Bonti, from Allergan, are coming our way.”

An Injectable Moisturizer

Almost everyone we spoke to were excited about the introduction of SkinVive on the market, but don’t call it a skin booster—the word at the meeting is that it is more like an “injectable moisturizer.” “I recently started using SkinVive, and I appreciate the concept as it aligns with my emphasis on skin care,” says Bloomfield Hills, MI dermatologist Linda Honet, MD. “Without proper skin care, patients may undermine the benefits of procedures like filler, Botox, and lasers.”

“Presenting data on generational priorities, particularly among young millennials and Gen Z, it’s evident that concerns about skin quality are prominent,” adds Washington, D.C. dermatologist Noëlle S. Sherber, MD. “Patients are increasingly drawn to options like SkinVive for enhanced hydration, a natural glow, and positive effects on their appearance, offering a distinct alternative to traditional treatments like filler.”

Deeper Laser Skin Tightening

Lasers that can go deeper, for a tightening like no other, were also featured. “We are embracing innovative treatments utilizing advanced light and laser devices, such as the Fotona system,” says Southlake, TX and Monroe, LA dermatologist Janine Hopkins, MD. “It features a new ‘endo tight’ setting with a 600-nanometer microscopic fiber, which allows us to address both epidermal and dermal changes, providing a comprehensive approach to skin aging by heating and tightening fascia and ligaments.”

Cultural Conversations

The cultural competency and diversity offerings in dermatology were discussed, emphasizing the importance of understanding and addressing the unique needs of patients from diverse backgrounds, including Islamic, Jewish, African American and transgender patients. ASDS meeting co-chair, North Bethesda, MD dermatologist Rebecca A. Kazin, MD says cultural competencies were a key focus in planning the meeting. “We really are working on diversity in dermatology, not just in skin color. Also in sexuality, in political perspective, and social perspective. That is something that we really are highlighting in the field.”

“The talk on diversity and equity by Montclair, NJ dermatologist Jeanine B. Downie, MD, highlighted the significance of these considerations, although it was noted that the audience largely consisted of individuals who were already well-versed in the subject,” said Towsend, MD dermatologists Eva Simmons-O’Brien, MD and Diane Orlinsky, MD. “Additionally, the talks on understanding patient backgrounds when it comes to complications underscored the distinctive role of dermatologists in managing complications related to procedures. If you’re going to do a procedure, you have to know how to take care of the complication. Whereas there’s definitely a lot of places that don’t know what to do when the patient comes in.” 

West Palm Beach, FL Kenneth Beer, MD acknowledged that discussions on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) were a standout feature for both seasoned and new dermatologists. A meeting highlight was a DREAM panel focused on diversity in aesthetics that included his son, Miami dermatology resident Jacob Beer, MD. The DREAM initiative, established by Allergan Aesthetics and SkinBetter Science, aims to tackle the impact of systemic racism in the field of medicine.

Vitiligo Breakthroughs

Vitiligo, characterized by a reduction in pigment production due to immune cell attacks on melanocytes, was also discussed. Chevy Chase, MD dermatologist Maral Skelsky, MD says a groundbreaking treatment called melanocyte keratinocyte transplantation is helping to restore pigment. “The treatment involves using a full-thickness, minimal split-thickness skin graft, processing it into a liquid form, and transplanting the cells responsible for melanin production onto the affected area,” she explains. “These cells then actively generate new pigment. It’s really fascinating.”

Micro-Coring After Care

Micro-Coring with Ellacor gives patients an option for lower face tightening without surgery. The minimally invasive method tightens skin and reduces wrinkles by extracting 4 to 8 percent of the treated area through tiny micro-cores. “One thing patients should know about Ellacore is it’s still an invasive procedure,” says Germantown, TN dermatologist Purvisha Patel, MD, who is performing the treatment on patients at her practice. “There is a wound healing component. Patients may have hyperpigmentation, so I’m also using lasers on them after to help facilitate a smoother recovery after the procedure.”

Laser-Coring

While micro-coring has been a topic of conversation for some time, a new skin-tightening contender has entered the chat. Wellesley Hills, MA dermatologist Madeline Krauss, MD says a new modality can create micro cores without needles. “The UltraClear Laser actively lifts and rejuvenates lower face areas through its unique laser coring ability,” explains Dr. Krauss. “Laser coring utilizes laser energy instead of hollow needles to create micro cores that contract upon healing.”

Scar Solutions

Scar care made a major splash, with experts sharing the latest ways to minimize them early on. New York dermatologist Diane Madfes, MD says the sooner the better. “Early intervention for scars involves the use of vascular lasers and neurotoxin, targeting redness in early scars,” she explains. “Scars become thicker, anywhere from about six to 12 weeks after whenever the injury happened.”

Denver, CO dermatologist Joel Cohen, MD says a combination approach of advanced techniques has given him incredible results, which he presented on at the show. “Utilizing a fractional ablative erbium laser we target scars deeply, reaching depths of 750 to 1000 microns. Traditional dermabrasion done on the surface ensures a comprehensive treatment in a single session. We can achieve noticeable improvements in just one treatment, compared to the extended course of multiple treatments.”

Safer Acne Options

Glenn Dale, MD dermatologist Valerie D. Callender, MD says acne-specific lasers have become crucial in dermatology, with a shift towards FDA-cleared options that address past concerns of adverse events. “Unlike previous lasers, these penetrate deeper and target the sebaceous glands directly, proving safer across various skin tones,” she notes. “This allows for the concurrent use of acne medications. They also help minimizing risks for post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, especially in darker skin types.”

Visible Collagen Boost

The innovative use of imaging in aesthetic dermatology is a topic New York dermatologist Orit Markowitz, MD is exploring at her practice. “I’m actively focusing on collagen stimulation through bio-stimulation and genetics in my imaging work. This includes injectables, including stem cells and epigenetics. Advances in imaging can reveal evidence of skin changes at a cellular level. Imaging can contribute to advancements in skin rejuvenation and the impact of topicals by showing how they work on the skin’s structure.”

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