• 2016-4-960

    What is a dermatologic surgeon?

    Part of a progressive medical subspecialty, ASDS member dermatologists perform medically necessary and cosmetic procedures to improve the health, function and beauty of skin through every stage of life.

  • 2016-3-960

    From forehead furrows to frown lines…

    Performing more than 5 million cosmetic procedures each year, ASDS member dermatologists offer many treatments that are less intense, safer and have quicker recovery times than ever before.

  • 2016-2-960

    3 million Americans are diagnosed with skin cancer every year

    Any suspicious new growths or changes should be examined by a dermatologist immediately. ASDS member dermatologists are trained to select the best treatment choice based on the individual patient.

  • 2016-1-960

    From excess fat to wrinkles…

    Offering a range of office-based cosmetic procedures, ASDS member dermatologists can select the appropriate treatment choice to meet your individual goals.

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In This Section

Excision and Punch Replacement Graft for Acne Scars


Treatment Options


Learn more about treatment options for acne scars


In excision, the doctor cuts into the skin to remove the acne scar and then closes the wound with stitches.In punch replacement grafting, the doctor uses a round sharp tool matched to the size of the scar to remove it. A skin graft, usually taken from behind the ear, is used to fill the wound. 

Before (top) and after (bottom) 1mm autologous punch grafts.

Photo courtesy of Pear E. Grimes, MD - Los Angeles, California 










Patients with deep "icepick" acne scarring are good candidates for excision and punch replacement grafting. These treatments can sometimes be combined with laser resurfacing. 


While no specific risks are associated with excision and punch replacement grafting, patients should be aware that the procedure leaves behind scars that are much smaller and lighter than the original. 

Estimated cost

Excision and punch replacement grafting acne treatment can range from several hundred to several thousand dollars depending on the extent of treatment. Since most medical insurance companies consider excision and punch replacement grafting for acne scarring a cosmetic procedure, it is generally not covered. 

Preparing for the procedure

  • Thoroughly discuss medical history and expectations with the doctor. 
  • Arrive to the appointment with a makeup-free face. 

What to expect after the procedure

  • Patients may not see immediate improvement.
  • Wounds must be cleansed, and bandages changed daily. 
  • Some bruising may occur for the first one to two weeks. 

Finding a doctor

Visit "Find a dermatologic surgeon" and choose "Acne Scar Treatments" from the dropdown menu. Because ASDS dermatologists are trained in a variety of the best and latest techniques, they are the most qualified to evaluate and select the best treatment choice based on the individual patient's condition. 
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