Same Exact Treatment (Fotofacial) Totally Different Results... Why?

I had a fotofacial 2 days ago... This is the 5th treatment I've had. Every time previously, I've ALWAYS had swelling, redness and immediate brown spots! I walk out of the place striped, puffy and feel burned. Love the results. This time I had it done by a different RN (experienced) who says she followed the exact settings that were in my chart. It felt the same too... This time I don't have ONE brown spot...not ONE. No redness, no swelling, no spot! Looks like I had nothing done. Why???

Doctor Answers 2

Why is IPL Not the Same Very Time?

Hello.  There are two possible explanations.

The first is that as you move through the treatment program much of the sun damage gets blanched away.  This means that with each successive treatment the skin's response is usually less severe.

The other issue is that the practitioner should be looking for a very specific tissue response and if she's not getting it, the problem may be with the machine.  The same settings on the machine do not necessarily mean the same tissue response as the device may not be performing up to par.

We are also in the Los Angeles/Orange County area and prefer lasers to IPL because they can permanently remove sun damage, whereas IPL treatments usually result in temporary blanching of sun spots.  You can view the link below to read an article we wrote comparing the technologies.

Los Angeles Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Photofacial treatments

As the brown spots and spider veins resolve, you will not see the same reactions as before.  At the start of each treatment, we always do a few pulses as a test to see the skin reaction and if no pinkness occurs, we increase the strength of the treatment a bit.  Even without experiencing redness or brown crusting, your treatment will have stimulated some collagen for you.

Martie Gidon, MD, FRCPC
Toronto Dermatologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 22 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.