The skin is the largest organ of the body. It serves many important functions, including protecting the body from infection, and regulating body temperature and fluids. Despite its resiliency, skin can be damaged by hormonal changes, exposure to environmental elements, and aging. If the appearance and texture of the skin have been affected by these factors, a procedure called microdermabrasion may be of help. During microdermabrasion treatments, which generally last about one hour, a jet of very tiny crystals is sprayed across the surface of the skin to remove impurities and imperfections. The discarded crystals and debris are simultaneously vacuumed into a receptacle and are later disposed. Because microdermabrasion allows the controlled removal of the outermost layers of the skin, there is little pain involved and improvement in the skin's appearance can be seen immediately. However, several treatments may be needed to achieve the desired results. There are several potential complications associated with this procedure that should be discussed with a doctor prior to the procedure.