While popular in the 80’s, Chemical Peels seem like a cosmetic-fashion of yesteryear. For many years though, Chemical Peels formed an important part of dermatologists and cosmetic Doctors first-line armament for effectively treating many skin disorders. But who can blame Doctors' attention shifting with the overwhelming abundance of new cosmetic procedures.
Admittedly I was certainly distracted by the picosecond-power-pulses of revolutionary new laser technology to really take notice of the steady but impressive track record chemical peels have for treating common skin disorders like acne, melasma and solar keratoses.
Sadly, the diversion has meant a generation of GP’s are less commonly exposed to the brilliant benefits of a very trusted skin basic – a Chemical Peel.
Which is a great pity really because performing a chemical peel is an accessible, easy, safe AND low cost office-based medical skin procedure (which is ideal for GP’s) and requires no additional marketing (even more ideal for GP’s) because you can offer it to your existing patients!
This is the kind of simple GP upskill which has immediate benefits to a variety patients (and the GP!) and is an example of the type of office based procedures we should be teaching GP's so they can co-manage chronic skin conditions in the Health Care Homes of the future.
I can see there is a growing space for treatments like this to be offered in primary care.
Exactly why I brought chemical peels OUT from the back of the cupboard and INTO my general practice and why I have included this training as part of the Skin, Laser, Cosmetics Special Skills rotation currently offered to GP Synergy GP registrars and GP’s at collective.care.
FYI, I didn't bring chemical peels into my practice for cosmetic patients. The fact that peels happen to rejuvenate the skin and make you look younger is just a convenient side effect ? !
The truth is they are an awesome additional “tool” in a GP's Doctors Bag for everyday general practice patients with everyday skin conditions like acne, acne scarring, melasma (bet your seeing a lot of that lately!) and especially the solar-damaged-elderly riddled with solar keratoses whom can't afford the newer expensive field treatments currently marketed to GP's. Patients are always grateful when offered another treatment choice - especially one that's significantly cheaper (AND has good evidence).