IPL to Chest Area with Redness? (photo)

I had IPL to my chest 4 days ago. There are a lot of brown pigmented areas, which I understand will peel off. However, my concern is that the brown pigmented areas are surrounded by redness. The redness seems to be fading and it doesn't feel like a burn, more like light bruising (gently sore if I push down on the areas). I can't go out in public yet unless I wear very high neckline shirts. The areas that don't have brown spotting also don't have redness, even though she did the whole chest.

Doctor Answers 2


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Since you are only 4 days out from your treatment, I would encourage you to give it some more time for everything to heal.  The darker pigment will likely flake off, just use a gently cleanser and do not exfoliate the area with anything.  Let it flake off on its own.  The redness should improve as well.

Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 231 reviews

IPL targets pigment

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IPL targets pigment, even deep pigment that you might not see on the surface. The results of pockets of pigment like this often mean people will get what we call "coffee grounds" after a treatment, which is the actual underlying pigment rising and coming out of the skin. It will feel a bit sticky, but will "sluff off" as we call it over a few days. Don't pick or rub on these areas. Cleanse them normally with your hands or a Clarisonic and gentle cleansers like Dove - not exfoliators or washcloths. The redness is edema which can happen after a treatment too - just like a slight sunburn. Use cool water a few times daily and apply hydrocortisone too, it will calm down the redness. Make sure your technician knows you got a good, solid response at this level, going up much higher on your could definitely result in a burn! This level would be your max!

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.