I had my lower beard treated and it made even worse (4 weeks post) - advice appreciated.

I have always had mild pseudofolliculitis barbae (redness around hair follicles in my beard - especially after shaving).  I finally decided to get it treated with a laser so that the hair would stop irritating the skin.  Well, four weeks have gone by since my first treatment and I am more red than I ever was before (my back hair was treated too - and this is fine).  Now, hairs are starting to grow back and it looks really bad (on top of the redness) - I have a very thick beard and you can see the patchy hair coming in.

My questions are:  (1) Is this hair loss permanent (after one treatment? It would really surprise me - I had 8 on my back and still have hair - Yag laser though). (2) For the redness, I am putting on betamethasone, but it is not helping much.  Are these burns possibly permanent?  (3)  If I just stop treatments now - will all of the hair grow back?  I think that would be the best thing to do.   Why is the hair not growing back at all - 4 weeks later?  The laser used as the lightsheer duet diode laser by lumenis.  

Doctor Answers 1

Lower Beard Laser Hair Treatment

1. No, hair removal by laser is not usually permanent, especially after having only one treatment since it’s considered permanent reduction of the hair. The hair goes through different growth cycles with different hairs in an area going through different phases simultaneously. Hence, patient’s need an average of 6 treatments at which time some of the hair will be reduced completely and what is left will be lighter and finer.

2. Betamethasone is probably causing most of your irritation due to its potent glucocortoid steroid which basically means it is strong. Purchase an over the counter Cortizone cream and use some Aloe gel to help soothe the irritated area. And discontinue the Betamethasone.

3. On the lower beard treatment, after having only just one treatment, the hair will grow back eventually. After eight treatments on the back you will probably experience some small patchy areas where hair will grow back, but it should be mostly gone after that many treatments.

4. The purpose behind Laser hair removal is to slow the hair growth and if possible, stop the hair growth. So even though you have only had one treatment, it still affected some of the hairs. They may grow slow for awhile but with just one treatment it should start to grow back in a more normal pattern eventually.

Good luck,
“Dr. D”

Fayetteville Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 117 reviews

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