Why is hair growning thicker and more black after 41 sessions of laser?

Hi Doctor, I'm 30 years old I have done 41 sessions (5 years) of laser on my face using the Alexandrite (2 years) and soprano ice (3 years) But after the 4 season the hair is thicker and more black and growing in places I never had before like chin and cheeks. my chin is almost like a man, and need to be threaded every month. I don't know what to do and I don't know if it is right to continue to do laser. (My hormone test come back normal) Please help me! Alexandra

Doctor Answers 4

Discontinue laser

Thank you for your question. I have been working with lasers over 12 years and I would not advice any further laser treatments. You may consider electrolysis. 

Laser hair removal paradoxical growth

It appears to me that you are experiencing paradoxical hair growth therefore I would suggest you to stop with laser and try using Vaniqa. Vaniqa should slow down the hair growth. I would suggest you to repeat hormone test few times since it matters at what time of the month you do it. Good luck!

Hardik Soni, MD
Summit Emergency Medicine Physician
5.0 out of 5 stars 45 reviews

Paradoxical hair stimulation?

I am so sorry to hear about your facial hair issues. My heart goes out to those women who have to deal with these stubborn hair on their face. I know it can be very frustrating indeed. Presuming that enough power was used with all your previous treatments with Alexandrite and Soprano ICE, what you have developed is called "paradoxical hair stimulation". The exact cause of this phenomenon is not known at the time of this writing. In many individuals the hormone tests seem to come back as normal. But were all the hormones tested? Ideally one need to check for Testosterone, Androstenedione, Dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate, 17-hydroxyprogesterone, Prolactin, LH and FSH, after overnight fasting, preferably on the third day of menstrual cycle, to be able to assess the role of any significant known hormonal issues. While hormone testing might help understand if there are any issues, it does not  help cure the imbalance; but certain medications like Spironolactone, or Metformin might help to some extent thru the series of laser sessions. Paradoxical hair stimualation typically occurs in facial and upper neck areas. I have never seen that in the body, below the neck, for example under arms or bikini or legs. We have seen good response with high powered laser settings in those with paradoxical hair growth; nevertheless maintenance sessions 3-4 times a year would be necessary, indefinitely. Its not realistic to expect permanent removal for life. You can try Vaniqa cream to delay the regrowth, and in my experience its too expensive and does not work in everyone. Hope this helps and hope you will find some doctor to help you out where you live. 

Ram Chandra, MD
Edison Physician

Alexandra using the alexandrite laser

After 41 sessions, I would say that further treatment is fruitless. Facial hair is tough to eradicate and this proves it. There is paradoxical hair growth in some people. This is mainly seen in Mediterranean descent. I would stop now and try using Vaniqa. This slows hair growth. 

Steven F. Weiner, MD
Panama City Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 41 reviews

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