IPL is a light-based technology that can help improve a variety of skin imperfections, including pigment spots, broken capillaries, acne, scars, and overall photo-damage. It is also an excellent way to eliminate unwanted hair. In the office we have the Palomar Icon Laser machine with a variety of different handpieces. Each handpiece filters out specific wavelengths of light, to make it effective for certain uses.
MaxG: this handpiece is used for photo-rejuvenation, to eliminate brown spots and small blood vessels on the face. It works on the vessels that many people get at the base of the nose, and it also very helpful in patients with diffuse facial redness such as in Rosacea. With Rosacea, a series of treatments will usually be needed to clear the redness. For patients with pigment problems, many of the darker spots will go away with one treatment, while some of the lighter spots may need several treatments. While pigment spots can often be improved, a particular pigment condition called melasma may prove very resistant to treatment. For melasma, a combination of IPL, bleaching creams and sun avoidance is needed - and even then, it may not improve, and may return with sun exposure or hormonal changes.
The MaxG handpiece can also be used to reduce postoperative bruising and scar redness.
Yellow: This handpiece can be used for both hair removal and reducing pigment. It is a fairly large handpiece, so is used for pigment on larger areas, such as the arms, back, legs etc.
Red: this handpiece is used for hair removal. You will need anywhere from 5-8 treatments to get permanent hair reduction / removal. It works best in patients with light skin and dark hair. Gray and white hairs are very hard to get rid of, as there is no pigment to absorb the laser energy. Hair removal treatment can be a little uncomfortable, but topical anesthetic cream can be used in sensitive areas, and our patients agree that the smooth skin is worth the discomfort.