Dermabrasion is usually done while you are awake. You will receive local anesthesia. This means the doctor will numb the area to be worked on.
A surgical instrument is used to gently and carefully "sand" the scar tissue off down to normal, healthy skin. The healing tissue is treated with ointments (such as petroleum jelly or antibiotic ointments) to reduce scab formation (crusting) and therefore reduce scar formation.
Update Date 11/20/2012
Updated by: Kevin Berman, MD, PhD, Atlanta Center for Dermatologic Disease, Atlanta, GA. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by A.D.A.M. Health Solutions, Ebix, Inc., Editorial Team: David Zieve, MD, MHA, David R. Eltz, Stephanie Slon, and Nissi Wang.