I had IPL for the first time Friday afternoon for broken capillaries on my nose. Is this a normal reaction? (photos)

Sent pictures to my doctor yesterday.. He seems I'm concerned but I am really surprised by the blistering, swelling and skin peeling.

Doctor Answers 5

Skin injury after IPL

This is not a normal reaction and needs to be evaluated by your physician as soon as possible.  At this point you need specific, detailed instructions for wound care.  


Dr. Ort

Lone Tree Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Post IPL Care and Complications

Hi and thank you for sharing your question and picture here! IPL usually does not have any down time and many patients will experience some redness at most (followed by peeling and flaking in some cases). It is possible that the energy level used in your treatment was too high or some areas were treated with more than single pass (which effectively increases the energy level delivered to the skin in those areas) or perhaps inadequate gel was applied to your skin which caused the skin burn and wound. While rare, complications do occur from time to time even at most skilled hands, so please do follow up with your physician for proper post-treatment care to ensure rapid and uncomplicated skin recovery. Most issues like this are expected to fully resolve without leaving behind any scars or permanent pigmentation changes. I hope it helps and good luck!

Elham Jafari, MD
Irvine Physician
4.8 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Reaction after IPL

Hi Joyfulpurpose,

IPL is  a no-downtime procedure and the photos you have provided are not typical of a post treatment patient. The first step is to see your doctor immediately so that your healing can be expedited and progress overseen. I suggest you speak to your physician in order to understand the reasons you are experiencing these atypical side-effects and to be assured that, if you plan to continue treatments, this will not happen in the future. Cases like yours are rare but often due to incorrect treatment parameters (too aggressive) or recent sun exposure.  I wish you all the best, Manish Khanna, MD

Manish Khanna, MD, FRCP(C)
Montreal Dermatologic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 22 reviews

Add some aftercare after IPL-fractional lasers, microneedling/prp

I suggest seeing a cosmetic dermatologist for aftercare.  I often use microneedling/PRP and nonablative fractional lasers for improvement. Best, Dr. Emer.

Jason Emer, MD
Los Angeles Dermatologic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 196 reviews

Burns from IPL need care to heal properly

Unfortunately, burns from IPL are fairly common.  You will need to be very careful with these as they heal up to prevent scarring and pigment issues. Ask your doc about wound care to help these heal and be vigilant about sticking to it-- avoid sun exposure while these are healing. 

Katherine Dee, MD
Seattle Physician
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.