IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) photorejuvenation is a noninvasive light based treatment that treats skin damage without the disruption of the skin's surface. It can simultaneously treat a wide range of skin concerns with no or limited down time. IPL technology rejuvenates skin all over the body by using light to penetrate into the skin. IPL can be used to reduce redness and sun damage, correct pigmentation problems, lighten post-surgical scars, lighten red or purple stretch marks, and rejuvenate the skin. It also treats a wide variety of skin concerns such as broken capillaries, age spots, benign brown spots, sun induced freckles, mottled pigmentation, and rosacea. The Medical Spa at PeaceHealth Medical Group uses this non-invasive solution to tailor the treatment to the needs of their Portland metro area patients.
The Medical Spa uses the Cutera laser system for the IPL treatments. The Cutera includes contact cooling for increased patient comfort, it is safe for all skin tones and types, and patients will not need to take time off of work or their regular activities for any recovery. Most patients will see substantial results in 1 – 3 treatments, but the total amount of treatments needed will depend on the patient’s skin concerns.
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Photo rejuvenation is a non-invasive procedure. With IPL, the doctor utilizes pulses of light strong enough to damage skin lesions and initiates a healing process that will start production of new skin tissues. Typically, cold gel is applied on the skin to help with any discomfort. The eyes are also protected from the intense light. The treatment may only last less than 30 minutes as extended exposure to the laser may cause complications. Patients are able to return to their normal routine after a few hours.
What to Expect
Treatment can only last for 20 minutes or less depending on the skin condition. Several sessions are required spaced every 3 weeks. The results are gradual and optimal results may be seen after several months. There may be discomfort during treatment and pain may be present but tolerable – similar to a slight sting of a rubber band snap. After treatment, the skin may appear reddish with slight swelling and blotchiness. These normally disappears after a few hours. It is very important to adhere to doctor’s post-treatment advise when it comes to care.
Plan Your Procedure
- Recovery Time
- Post-op Follow-up
- Procedure Recovery Location
IPL Photo Rejuvenation FAQs
Improvements are noticeable even after the initial treatment but optimal results may be evident after several months. The positive results of this laser treatment are gradual as the skin must be given time to heal to avoid any complications of an aggressive approach. There is no standard recovery time as patient’s condition can greatly vary.
Temporary Side Effects?
Side effects are mild. Redness, swelling, bruising are normal right after treatment. After a few days, blisters and crusting and skin peeling may be present. The patient must not pick on the skin as it is undergoing a normal process as it heals itself.
It is recommended for patients who are scheduled for an IPL photo treatment to refrain from tanners and exposure to sun 1 month prior to schedule. There are also medications that must be avoided such as minocycline, tetracycline, doxycycline or Retin-A/Renova a few weeks before schedule. These precautions minimizes and risks of complications and reactions the laser light may cause. To help prevent bruising and excessive swelling, patients may be required to take aspirin and ibuprofen 1 week before treatment.
Although patients will not be as sensitive to sun exposure as one might think after undergoing the IPL, going out under the sun must be a limited activity especially in between treatments. Doing so may significantly affect the outcome and may cause complications. Sunblock must be regularly applied. This also helps in minimizing possible recurring skin issues like sun spots, wrinkles and skin cancer.
Single Session Only?
A single session can’t last more than 30 minutes as extended exposure to IPL may be risky to the patient. An aggressive approach may bring negative effects instead of correcting skin irregularities. Several sessions are spread in between at least weeks so the resurfacing is gradual and results are also longer term as the skin heals naturally.