IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) Treatment
Pulsed Light treatments are performed with a non-invasive medical system that uses pulsed light therapy to reduce melanin (the dark pigment in your skin), or heat the blood vessels surrounding the acne lesions. The light energy is gently delivered to your skin in pulses, through a delicate, computer-controlled hand piece. After your treatment, the treated vascular or pigmented lesions will gradually fade and slowly disappear. Acne lesions are treated on multiple levels by eliminating the bacteria that causes acne while simultaneously decreasing the production of oil in the oil glands which causes obstruction and clogging.
Any area can be safely treated except the skin directly around the eyes.
The patient will feel a snapping sensation that in most cases is tolerable. During and after treatment the skin will be chilled with a cooled stainless steel roller to help the skin feel less uncomfortable. Local anesthesia is usually not required, but may be used if the patient requires it.
Photodynamic therapy involves the application of a solution, which consists of 20% Aminolevulinic HCl known as Levulan Kerastick, one hour prior to treatment with IPL. The application of this solution intensifies the absorption of the light emitted by the IPL. There is an additional cost for this therapy and if deemed appropriate, your physician will discuss it with you at your consultation.
Brown lesions generally will look slightly darker after treatment and then will fade away after 10 to 14 days. Red lesions generally turn gray or lose their color immediately after treatment and the area surrounding the lesion may turn red. The discoloration fades away after 10 to 14 days. Acne lesions will look slightly darker after the treatment and then fade away after 10 to 14 days.
Possible risks include swelling, crusting or blistering of the treated area and rarely have textural or pigment changes. However, in most cases patients experience just a slight redness of the skin for 1 to 2 days after the procedure.
Patients must use sunscreen in between the treatments. Your doctor will advise you on the appropriate sunscreen you should use. Tanning and sunbathing is discouraged as having a tan will interfere with the treatment.
The treatments are done at 1 to 2 or 3 to 6 week intervals. Multiple treatments are anticipated, however, this will vary depending upon the patient and the area being treated. Your doctor will discuss the number of treatments you will require at your consultation.