Clinical Edge

Summaries of Must-Read Clinical Literature, Guidelines, and FDA Actions

Darker Skin and Side Effects of Chemical Peels

J Am Acad Dermatol; ePub 2018 Mar 5; Vemula, et al

Superficial chemical peels performed in patients with Fitzpatrick skin types III-VI had a relatively low complication rate, while Fitzpatrick skin type VI had higher odds of experiencing an adverse event, a recent study found. In addition, side effects were noted to be less frequent during the winter months. Researchers sought to determine the frequency of side effects and complications associated with superficial chemical peels in patients with skin types III-VI. They performed a 5-year single center retrospective analysis and found:

  • Of 473 chemical peel treatments included, 18 (3.8%) were associated with short-term (≤2 weeks) or long-term (>2 weeks) complications.
  • The most frequent complications were crusting (2.3%), post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (1.9%), and erythema (1.9%).
  • All side effects resolved within 8 months of treatment and were located on the face.
  • When stratified by season, side effects were noted to be less common during the winter.
  • In the adjusted model, Fitzpatrick skin type VI was associated with a higher odds of side effects.


Vemula S, Maymone MBC, Secemsky EA, et al. Assessing the safety of superficial chemical peels in darker skin: A retrospective study. [Published online ahead of print March 5, 2018]. J Am Acad Dermatol. doi:10.1016/j.jaad.2018.02.064.

This Week's Must Reads

Should Medical Coding Be Taught During Residency?, J Drugs Dermatol; 2018 Jun; Blecher, Halverstam, et al

Primary Closure Lengths in MMS Based on Cancer Type, Dermatolog Surg; ePub 2018 Jun 8; Theroux, et al

Citizen Pscientist: Important New Research Tool, Dermatol Ther (Heidelb); ePub 2018 Jun 6; Sanchez, et al

Acne Successfully Treated with Laser Combination, Dermatolog Surg; ePub 2018 Jun 5; Bakus, et al

FDA Approves Rituxan for Pemphigus Vulgaris, Genentech Web site; 2018 Jun 7

Must Reads in Aesthetic Dermatology

FDA Approves Restylane Lyft for Back of Hands, FirstWord Pharma news release; 2018 May 21

Darker Skin and Side Effects of Chemical Peels, J Am Acad Dermatol; ePub 2018 Mar 5; Vemula, et al

Absorbable Suture Suspension Proves Effective, Aesthet Surg J; ePub 2017 Dec 8; Ogilvie, et al

Age and Hydration Play Roles in Skin Firmness, J Cosmet Dermatol; ePub 2017 Dec 27; Mayrovitz, et al

FDA Clears CoolSculpting for Double Chin Treatment, Allergan plc news release; 2017 Dec 12