Meet Dr. Moelleken

Dr. Brent Moelleken - Board Certified Plastic SurgeonBrent Moelleken, M.D., F.A.C.S. is a Plastic and Reconstructive surgeon practicing in Beverly Hills and Santa Barbara. Double board certified, he received his training at Harvard University, Yale University, UCSF and UCLA...

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Dr. Brent Moelleken - Board Certified Plastic Surgeon


Microdermabrasion improves the signs of aging and sun damage and it is a non-invasive, one-hour procedure for the skin on your face, neck, or arms.  During your procedure, you may feel a mild scratching as the machine removes your superficial skin cells. Additionally, you will notice a vibrating sensation and there is also a suction mechanism when your dead skin is lifted off.  There is virtually no down time or recovery period and you may resume your normal routine immediately following your treatment.  Microdermabrasion sloughs off the dead and dull surface layers of the skin, stimulating an increase in collagen production and rejuvenation.  The procedure also enhances circulation, which promotes the internal health of your skin.  Many patients see dramatic improvements in the tone, texture, and color of the treated areas after just one treatment.

Microdermabrasion can also:

  • Eliminate age spots and black heads
  • Eliminate hyperpigmentation (patches of darkened skin)
  • Exfoliate your skin, resulting in a refreshed appearance
  • Lessen the appearance of stretch marks
  • Reduce or eliminate enlarged pores
  • Treat acne and the scars left by acne
  • Eliminate fine facial lines and wrinkles
  • Gives skin a fresh, healthy glow
  • Improve oily or dull skin
  • Correct sun damage
  • Unclog pores
  • Improve poor skin texture

Wrinkles, sagging skin, fine lines, age spots, blemishes, enlarged pores, “crow’s feet”, sun damage, and undesired pigmentation are all signs of aging that were once considered some of the irreversible consequences of growing old.  With the advances made in medical science and cosmetic procedures today, fortunately a plethora of miracles are available for aging skin resulting in a rejuvenated, youthful look for anyone who desires it.  New innovations range from topically applied cosmoceuticals to advanced, cutting-edge surgical techniques.  While the variety of options available can be confusing, one of the easiest and most effective anti-aging treatments available is microdermabrasion, also known as microderm.  Double board-certified Dr. Brent Moelleken M.D., F.A.C.S., is proud to offer this skin-freshening technique at his state-of-the-art facility, Neo Surgery Center, located in Beverly Hills, California.  Microdermabrasion is essentially a powerful mechanical exfoliation treatment designed to help repair your skin.  Through gentle abrasion and suctioning, this procedure is effective in reducing many of the unwanted conditions associated with aging.

Your skin is an ever-changing organ that contains many specialized cells and structures.  Understanding how your skin functions is important in helping you decide the best option when considering any cosmetic procedure.  The epidermis, dermis, and subcutaneous tissue are the three structures that make up your skin.

The epidermis is an integrated epithelial layer that contains five layers that include:

  • Stratum corneum
  • Stratum licidum
  • Stratum granulosum
  • Stratum spinosum
  • Stratum basale

The top layer of the epidermis, the stratum corneum, is made of dead, flat skin cells that shed approximately every two weeks.  The bottom layer, the stratum basale, has cells that are shaped like columns. In this layer, the cells divide and push already formed cells into higher layers. As the cells move into the higher layers, they flatten and eventually die.

The dermis is composed of three types of tissue, which are:

  • Collagen
  • Elastic tissue
  • Reticular fibers

The two layers of the dermis are the papillary and reticular layers.  The upper, papillary layer, contains a thin arrangement of collagen fibers.  The lower, reticular layer, is thicker and made of thick collagen fibers that are arranged parallel to the surface of your skin.  The dermis is composed primarily of connective tissue and is bound tightly to the epidermis by the dermoepidermal junction, which is an extensive interface between the epidermis and papillary layer.  Collagen is the major structural component of the dermis.

Subcutaneous Tissue
The subcutaneous tissue is a layer of fat and connective tissue that houses larger blood vessels and nerves. This layer is important in the regulation of temperature of the skin itself and your body.  The size of this layer varies from person to person.

All resurfacing procedures apply their effects through different degrees of epidermal and dermal ablation.  Since your epidermis is the layer closest to the outside world, it is basically a set of dead skin cells on top of another layer of cells that are in the process of maturing.  The stratum corneum acts as a barrier between the outside world and your lower skin layers.  When you use skin products, some of the moisture passes through the stratum corneum, but not all of it can, allowing this layer to be a home to many minor skin imperfections that make your skin look aged.   Exfoliation is the process of removing these dead skin cells and debris and improving the superficial texture of your skin. This is precisely what microdermabrasion is designed to do and by taking off the dead cells, your skin will become smoother and more youthful.  When the dead skin layer is removed, microdermabrasion stimulates the rest of your skin to reproduce and replace what was taken away.  This creates a perfect situation when you add healthy products to your skin because it is now more permeable.

Facial skin resurfacing can be traced to ancient Egyptian times with the application of abrasive masks of alabaster particles. For centuries, various substances have been used to peel, exfoliate, and rejuvenate the skin. The evolution of chemical peeling and dermabrasion began in the early 20th century.  Microdermabrasion was developed in Italy in 1985 and its use was widespread in European countries prior to its introduction to the United States.  The original microdermabrasion technology was called crystal microdermabrasion.  This method uses a wand to both spray and vacuum up aluminum oxide crystals (corundum), which is the second hardest mineral behind diamonds.  This technology offers the advantages of low risk and rapid recovery compared with more traditional resurfacing methods.  Skin resurfacing techniques, such as dermabrasion, chemical peeling, and the more recent technique of laser resurfacing, have a history of effectiveness but also the potential for significant complications.

Basically, microdermabrasion is a general term for the application of tiny rough grains to buff away the surface layer of your skin and there are two kinds of microdermabrasion treatments. One approach involves a hand-held device that streams tiny crystals across your skin while an attached vacuum simultaneously suctions the exfoliating crystals back into the machine along with any dead or loosened skin. The newer approach uses a diamond-tip wand that is gently moved across your skin to exfoliate.  All of the action in microdermabrasion takes place at the level of the stratum corneum because affecting the deeper layers of your skin would be painful and would risk permanently embedding the tiny grains into your skin. Microdermabrasion is a skin-care technique that has become extremely popular with people from all walks of life.  Called the “instant facelift” and the “power peel”, microdermabrasion is an effective alternative to costlier and more invasive procedures.

During your consultation at Neo Surgery Center, Dr. Moelleken will tailor your treatment plan depending on your unique situation.  Microdermabrasion can be used as a simple procedure on its own or in combination with other treatments for a more aggressive approach.  Microdermabrasion may take a series of treatments to show improvement because it took many years for your skin to lose its vitality and it takes time for it to regenerate new cells.  The results are worth the wait however and some of Dr. Moelleken’s patients prefer microdermabrasion as their monthly skin treatment.  As with any cosmetic aesthetic procedure you choose, Neo Surgery Center will develop a program to help you meet all of your cosmetic desires.  If you are looking for a non-surgical way to freshen and rejuvenate your appearance, call Neo Surgery Center today and let us help you solve your skin problems in a safe, proven, and effective manner that has satisfied thousands of patients from around the globe.

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