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Author Topic: trying to scare you away from "homerolling"  (Read 6365 times)


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  • Medical journalist trying to scare you away from "homerolling"
« on: November 03, 2012, 04:44:28 PM »
There is a company owned by Horst Liebl, that holds the Dermarollerâ„¢ trademark. They falsely claim to have invented the dermaroller.

Their main distributor and online vendor is dermarollerus dot com, and the only products they sell to private individuals have such short needles (0.2 mm) that they do not majorly rejuvenate the skin, those short-needled rollers are mainly for product absorption. They only sell the longer-needled dermarollers to cosmetic surgeries and beauty salons and the like. That is their business strategy, because that way, they hold a chokehold on the professional market, forcing them to honor their patent and buy dermarollers only from them. You already guessed it: Their rollers are many times more expensive than ours or just about anyone else's, even though their rollers don't even have a staggered needle pattern.

What is so controversial about them?

1. Dr. Des Fernandez says they got the idea from him, they cheated him out of the patent he claims. After having talked to him and thoroughly verifying his arguments, we think he's right. From his correspondence: "While I have your attention I would like to point out that Horst Liebl was not the inventor.  I drew a diagram of the roller for him in 1998 when he visited me in Cape Town.  I had submitted the design for patenting the year before but withdrew because there was doubt about it's patentability."

2. That company is reportedly using lawsuits to shut down other companies that sell dermarollers so that they'll have the monopoly, even though their patent is not enforceable due to prior art. Again, from Dr. Fernandez' email: "Dr. Pistor, the father of mesotherapy, had patented a rolling device in 1950's to enhance the penetration of vitamins and induce collagen formation!". This is the dermaneedling device patent from 1974 by Michel Pistor: Read PDF. So Dr. fernandes was correct in thinking that the dermaroller was not patentable, because Pistor's patent shows and describes an identical embodiment of the invention and for identical uses as the currently patented Dermarollerâ„¢ (read PDF) by Horst Liebl.  As you see, Liebl patented the same device in 2009, 35 years later.  That makes his patent null and void due to its unenforceability.

3. They or their distributors are spreading a lot of nonsense about home-dermarolling, apparently in the hope to scare people away from it, so that they'll get a monopoly on the use of the devices (their dermarollers of course) in clinics only. More about their FUD (sowing fear, uncertainty and doubt) later.

4. The only dermaroller they sell has such short needles (0.2 mm) that it doesn't much regenerate collagen or elastin (it only affects the epidermis), but they charge you 150 dollars for it. $149.95 to be precise. There is nothing special about their roller. It used to be produced in Bali, Indonesia, according to Dr. Fernandes. Then their factory reportedly burnt down and noone knows where they're produced now.

We will now debunk their scaremongering (they want you to use their expensive rollers in a clinical setting only, they can't make money from "home-rollers"):

They say that dermaneedling devices are not reusable because the needles get blunt

That is clearly nonsense, because they sell a 0.2 mm dermaroller and claim that you can reuse it 125 times without getting blunt needles. The needle length is irrelevant for the speed of blunting, since only the very tip blunts. So they contradict themselves when they say that needles blunt quickly when the roller is used multiple times. Similar nonsense is that blunt needles can cause nerve damage. The nerves are much deeper than the longest needles. The truth is that needles only very slowly get blunt, depending on how much skin is treated, in total, with a needling device. And you will start feeling that. Needling will hurt a bit more or it will get a bit harder to push the needles in. Then you know it's time to replace the roller.

They say that you can't reuse a dermaneedling device because they can't be re-sterilized

They put up a straw man by saying that alcohol merely disinfects but not sterilizes. They claim that only autoclaving can sterilize a roller, and that therefore, only metal rollers can be reused. However, there are cheap chemicals that do sterilize a plastic roller: Chloramine-T for example. We sell it. That Chloramine-T sterilizes instead of merely disinfects was already known 100 years ago (PDF).

They claim that dermaneedling with needles of 0.5 mm length and longer is a "medical procedure" and illegal to perform in the US for anyone except medical doctors

This is of course not true, since ordinary tatoo needles go up to 2 mm deep and something tells me that there aren't too many surgeons amongst tattoo artists. They warn against nerve damage, infections and other scary things, even though there isn't the slightest danger that that ever happens. There are no nerves anywhere at the depth of even the deepest needles we sell (2 mm). Infections would be extremely rare even if you'd not clean and disinfect or sterilize the roller/stamp, but with disinfection or sterilization, infections are totally unheard of. We have sold tens of thousands of dermarollers, single needles and dermastamps and we have yet to hear of a single infection. It's just sowing FUD (fear, uncertainty, doubt).

They claim that dermarollers with a needle length from 0.5 mm and above are restricted medical devices

No doubt this would be due to their own lobbying! Even if true in some jurisdictions, this legislation should be easy to circumvent or even revert, since a dermaroller with the longest needles can simply be reclassified as a handy tattoo device to tattoo large areas rapidly. Tattoo needles aren't medical devices and can be freely imported and bought and sold by anyone. Alternatively, the devices can even be labeled "Sushi tenderizer".
« Last Edit: December 13, 2012, 12:27:03 PM by SarahVaughter »