Redness and Burning Normal 24hours After IPL?

I had an IPL treatment 24 hours ago at a spa that has an IPULSE IPL machine that does no more than 19joules. This is not my first treatment with an IPL and have been treated with up to 23joules in the past. However, this treatment was done and completed and now at 24hrs after the treatment the skin on both cheekbones and temples is still red and burning and i cannot understand why cause this is the first time! There is no change in medication neither creams or soap? will this go away?? :(

Doctor Answers 2

IPL and redness

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There are several reasons for different results.  You cannot compare joules on different machines.  There may also have been a difference in pulse duration, delay and whether a single, double or triple pulse was used or overlapping of pulses.  Different technicians have different methods of treating.  The redness and burning will probably subside soon and would be helped by cold compresses.  Treating with IPL takes experience and should be supervised by a physician, especially if you have any problems.  If you still have concerns, return to the spa for their advice.   

Toronto Dermatologist

Redness ans burning 24 hours after IPL

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You state that you had a treatment  with a new IPL machine that can go only up to 19 Joules and you have redness and burning 24 hours after, while  previously you had up to 23 joules with apparently no redness or burning.

Also, you state that no different creams were used this time, compared to previous times.

There are several possible explanations:

1-Your skin may have been more tanned prior to treamtent with the new machine.

2-You may also be using a triple combinaton bleaching cream (Triluma) which contains Tretinoin, Hydroquinone and Fluocinolone. The Tretinoin may make your skin more vulnerable to the  IPL  effects of burning and redness and even if you had used  it prior to the previous IPL treatments, thepeeling effects of Tretinoin may vary from one treatment to the next..  It is best to avoid Tretinoin for at least 1 week before IPL and especially before a chemical peel.

3.- Each IPL machine brand has its own calibration factors and 19Joules on one machine might be stronger than 23 Joules on another , although such a big difference  seems unlikely.  When was the new machne last calibrated?

4- Did you have the same number of passes and the same type of pulses (long or short) with both brands of IPL machines? Pl. check with both operators on these specifics.

The redness should disappear in 1 or 2 days, if it hasn't disappeared allready.

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.