Are Laser Hair Removal Burns Permanent? (photo)

Hello I just had laser hair removal done on my legs and I have large red circles that feel slightly swollen and hot. I am a fitness instructor and have classes every day which may not help the situation. Just wondering if this is going to be permanent?? I have been putting aloe vera on all day. This was done only today.

Doctor Answers 3

Complications with Laser Hair Removal

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Complications can occur with any laser hair removal treatment, regardless of the device. Swelling of the hair follicle and redness are normal occurrences after the procedure. It's important to avoid excessive and direct sun exposure right after the treatment for about a week. Be sure to work with your dermatologist about the best way to address your particular situation. 


Redondo Beach Dermatologic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

Treatment for laser hair removal burns

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My recommendations for treatment of laser burns in the skin are as follows:
1. Keep the areas clean by washing with a mild soap twice daily.
2. If there is blistering, relieve the pressure and hasten healing time by gently popping all blisters using a sterile needle or pin at the side of the blister. This should be a painless procedure. Do not remove the roof of the blister but allow it to settle down so it is flush with the skin. The blister roof will then form a protective cover.
3. Apply Aquaphor Healing Ointment (available without a prescription) to all involved areas to keep them "greasy". The greasier the area is, the faster it will heal. The drier and scabbier the area gets, the slower it will heal.
4. Permanent scarring is unlikely but you have to guard against post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation by constant protection from the sun for these areas such as using protective clothing and sunscreens.
5. Make certain you are under a doctor's care and watch for signs of infection so that oral antibiotics can be started as soon as possible if necessary.

Mitchell Schwartz, MD
South Burlington Dermatologic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Laser hair removal burns

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I have no idea what kind of laser hair removal device could cause those marks. All the laser hair removal machines I've ever seen have bars, not round tips. That being said, aloe vera will not help if you have burns on your skin. You need to get a prescription hydrocortisone and a topical steroid and need to apply them liberally after cool water, a few times a day. Burns are usually darker and more brown, not red and swollen, so you could possibly have been treated at too high of settings but actually avoided a burn and got edema and erythema instead. But again, I'm concerned about the laser used because I've never seen a shape like that.

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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.