Adult Acne Levulan Treatment, Red/blue Light and IPL

PDT treatment with Levulan for moderate-severe...

PDT treatment with Levulan for moderate-severe adult acne, 32F.

Treatment: no acetone, levulan applied with 90 minute incubation period, red/blue light on my face for approx 30 minutes (no pain), followed by IPL (minimal pain).

Day 1: My face is extremely red (way more than the photo shows, like a lobster), and minorly swollen. It hurts, but in a sunburn way, not an 'ouch' way.

Day 2: Just before bed on day 1 I noticed an area...

Day 2: Just before bed on day 1 I noticed an area on my chin just below my lip, around the crease, was weeping. Kind of freaked me out as I was worried my whole face would weep and scab. Woke up this morning and the weeping area is crusted, but no more weeping on the rest of my face; I think it was from the motion of eating.

My face is less red than yesterday, and starting to get quite tight. It doesn't sting or hurt at all anymore, just uncomfortable because of the tightness. I can see some small whiteheads under the tight skin, but I think they're from pimples I had before the treatment. Nothing I'd call a breakout. I'm taking baths instead of showering because my water pressure is high and I don't want to blast my skin off. A tiny bit of peeling has started, but I'm not encouraging it yet. Trying to keep my face still so I don't get anymore weepy spots; living off of Vega smoothies today.

I also wanted to mention that I'm supplementing to help the healing process...started with arnica a week before the Levulan, and since the Levulan am taking about ~ 7000 mg of Vitamin C a day (spread out every couple of hours), and 150 mg of zinc (50 mg 3x a day). I know mega-supplementing isn't everyone's thing, but it's worked well for me in the past. I'll do the zinc until tomorrow, and on day 4 I'll go down to 50mg a day. I'll keep taking high doses of vitamin C for a couple of weeks.

Day 3: Not my favourite day...I've been freaking...

Day 3: Not my favourite day...I've been freaking out a bit because some marks have become really visible on my face that I'm concerned are IPL burns. You can sort of see in the photo that there are two rows of circular dots on my cheek and a cluster on my jaw. I'm trying to chill out though because I read so many reviews of people going nuts on day 3 or 4 and then 2 weeks later saying everything is fine. Fingers crossed!

I'm flaking a little bit, peeling a very little bit. The few dark bits that have come off have nice skin underneath, so I'm really hoping that that's what happens with my circular pattern blobs...right now it looks like somebody stubbed cigarettes out on my face in a methodical pattern. Blah.

No pain, just anxiety! My weepy bit is still crusty but it will be fine, it's not discoloured or anything.

Day 4: Good news! I wasn't burned (more than i was...

Day 4: Good news! I wasn't burned (more than i was supposed to be); over the past day some of the dark circular spots have fallen off and the skin underneath is fine, just a tiny bit pink. This has by far been the most disgusting day though...my whole face is literally falling off in chunks. It's nice to see what's underneath though. The skin is pink, and my pores are noticeably smaller (though that might just be from microswelling). Most notably, I haven't had a breakout from the procedure, and right now I don't think I have any active pimples, which is quite awesome. I've been on accutane twice with no significant results, and the reason I'm getting this treatment is to hopefully shrink my sebaceous glands. So, as of right now I'm pretty happy with the results, but I still have some peeling to do (it looks like the peeled areas might peel again, too).

Definitely glad I took a week off because walking around in public like this is not even an option- the photos unfortunately don't show much (I only have time to do this at night, so low light + webcam = bad pics), but the parts that haven't peeled yet look kind of like scales. I covered my mirrors so that I didn't have to look yesterday, lol. That said, if I really needed to be somewhere tomorrow (day 5), I think I could safely exfoliate what's left off. But I don't need to be so I'm not going to risk it.

DAY 8: I should have updated sooner! Anyways, I'm...

DAY 8: I should have updated sooner! Anyways, I'm very pleased. I got a mini-breakout of two cystic pimples (in weird places that I don't normally get them, chin and forehead), but otherwise my skin is exceptionally, unusually clear (except for my old acne scars). It's a really big difference, and I definitely think it was worth it, especially if the effects last a while.

So, I'll try to remember to post an update in a few weeks or a month to report if the clearing lasted.
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Comments (7)

Hi I hope you had a pleasant experience, after a couple months what were the results like? Do you regret doing IPL or no? Was it worth the money and would you suggest it to someone with acne prone skin?
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How many treatments did you need in order to see results? Did you see results after the first PDT?
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It makes me so happy to hear you are seeing good results!! Looking forward to hearing how long it lasts. :)

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Love that the skin underneath is looking good!! I really hope the pores did get smaller & it's not just swelling, that would be a great thing to see!! I did acutane as well, but had to stop during my second course of it - such a bummer to be one of the ones it didn't work for, isn't it? :-/ Oh well, there is bound to be something that will help with our skin & perhaps Levulan/IPL combo will do the trick!

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Oh, sorry to hear about the weepy spot - can totally understand why that would be alarming! Glad it sounds like things are going ok though. Looks like you are already pretty tiny, or I would say it might be a nice little bonus to get to drop a couple pounds as a result of your smoothie diet. ;)

K, keep us posted - so interested to hear how it continues to go!!

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As a person who also deals with adult acne I'm really interested to hear how this works for you!! Do you mind me asking if your acne is cystic, or just more normal breakouts??

Hoping for good results for you!!

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Hi, thanks! Yes, it's cystic on my jawline and occasionally on my cheeks, the rest is regular pustules.
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