With the availability of new technologies, the number of subjects undergoing medical and cosmetic interventions is increasing. Many procedures (e.g., ablative fractional laser treatment) resulting in superficial/minor wounds require appropriate aftercare to prevent complications in wound healing and poor cosmetic outcome. We review the published evidence of the usefulness of topical dexpanthenol in postprocedure wound healing and the associated mechanisms of action at the molecular level. A search in the PubMed and Embase databases was performed to query the terms dexpanthenol, panthenol, superficial wound, minor wound, wound healing, skin repair, and postprocedure. Search results were categorized as clinical trials and in vitro studies. In vitro and clinical studies provided evidence that topically applied dexpanthenol promotes superficial and postprocedure wound healing. Latest findings confirmed that dexpanthenol upregulates genes that are critical for the healing process. The gene expression data are of clinical relevance as evidenced by prospective clinical studies indicating that topical dexpanthenol accelerates wound healing with rapid re-epithelialization and restoration of skin barrier function following skin injury. It can therefore be inferred that topical dexpanthenol represents an appropriate and state-of-the-art treatment option for superficial postprocedure wounds, especially when applied early after the superficial skin damage.
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