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Book and New Media Reviews
September 2003

Glycolic Acid Peels

Author Affiliations


Arch Dermatol. 2003;139(9):1224. doi:10.1001/archderm.139.9.1224-a

Glycolic Acid Peels is a small, unassuming, helpful little book. In a series of brief chapters, luminaries in the field discuss their areas of interest. Collectively, these chapters provide an overview of what is currently known about glycolic acid peels. Literature reviews and firm findings are supplemented with personal advice on how to formulate solutions, target acne and rosacea, treat certain skin types (eg, those of Asians and African Americans), and perform newer procedures such as body peels. The book can be used as an update of the May 1996 issue of Dermatologic Surgery, which was devoted entirely to articles on glycolic peels. Much has happened since then, and aficionados of peels will want to add this book to their libraries as a comprehensive guide and reference. Inevitably, as in many books on a single procedure, there is some overreaching and proselytizing. Peels are occasionally presented as a panacea, but this reader is less than convinced about the "dermal effects of alpha hydroxy acids." However, there is no denying that glycolic peels are a safe and popular intervention, and that dermatologists should know how to perform them safely and to best effect. There is more to peels than is immediately apparent, and this book will help the reader become an "expert" who can choose from among a range of variations, counsel patients appropriately, and understand the practical considerations inherent in judiciously using chemical peels in combination with other superficial agents.

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