Can an IPL Help with Tiny Pin Point Width Veins?

I had open heart surgery about a year ago. I've always had a few broken capillaries that have been treated with an IPL. It does do a food job after a week or so of not wanting to leave the house because of the swelling and redness. Now that I am on blood thinners it seems like my face is starting to look like a street map of Phoenix with tiny little veins. Can an IPL treat pin point width veins and is there a way to do it without the swelling and redness?

Doctor Answers 7

IPL is great for facial veins and diffuse redness

We often use Limelight IPL for diffuse facial redness and small capillaries.  Often for our patients with distinct facial vessels we also use a laser to treat individual vessels.  With the laser there is generally less redness and swelling of the surrounding tissue.  Some patients are significantly more prone to swelling after treatment.  If you find the downtime or swelling too great you may consider asking your provider to treat at a slightly lower setting...know however that by treating at lesser energies you may get less down time but you may also get a slightly lesser result and ultimately need more treatments.  None of these treatments is a cure however.  If you have a tendencies to get these little capillaries it will require maintenance long term to keep them at bay.


Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 145 reviews

IPL for capillaries near scar

Hi.  We use both the IPL and our vascular laser in our practice for these troublesome vessels.  Both methods are effective; the choice depends on skin type (Nd:YAG can be used on any skin type, but IPL can not) and the clinical presentation.  IPL can also treat superficial brown-colored pigmentation issues, which is sometimes helpful near a scar.
All the best,

Thomas Fiala, MD
Orlando Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 79 reviews

IPL is great for superficial small blood vessel removal

Don't use IPL if you are a person of color or have a tan because the pigment in your skin (natural or tan) will be also targeted by the IPL and you may get a burn. The less pigment (the whiter) you are, the safer IPL is. Besides treating small blood vessels, IPL can nicely treat brown age spots as the IPL targets this pigment (as mentioned above).

Harlow Hollis, MD
Victoria Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

IPL is good option for "pin point" facial veins.

IPL is a good option to treat small facial veins. Lasers like the pulse dye laser and long pulsed Nd:YAG are options as well.  To minimize swelling and redness speak to your provider about pre and post treatment precautions.

Anifat Balogun, MD
Seattle Otolaryngologist

Absolutely IPL is a great treatment for facial vessels.

Appropriate settings should not result in downtime for recovery. Speak to your dermatologist about your goals and concerns. While this technology is very effective it is also very powerful. Only go to highly qualified physicians and not a "spa" setting.

Pamela Carr, MD
Sugar Land Dermatologic Surgeon
3.7 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

IPL OK Laser better

An IPL can be used for this, but the pulsed dye laser would be more effective. Also, you might consider electrodessication at a low power setting. This modality is  also effective and significantly less expensive.

Arnold R. Oppenheim, MD
Virginia Beach Dermatologist
4.7 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

IPL can treat small veins

IPL certainly is an option to treat your veins. The settings of the machine can be adapted to give you a gentler treatment.

Robert Kasten, MD
Mainz Dermatologic Surgeon

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.