I'm curious to know if causing a flare up right before I get my laser done would make it more effective. Would this bring the vessels to the surface making it easier to target? I could do a hard workout before hand, or drink some alcohol beforehand.
Will V-Beam Be More Effective if I Induce a Flare Up Right Before Treatment?
Doctor Answers 2
V-beam effectiveness increased by inducing flare-up? NO!
Actually, exercising or using alcohol doesn't "bring vessels to the surface." Whatever vessels you have are already there, and both of these methods simply cause those vessels to dilate and allow more blood flow through them. Blushing from embarrassment or anxiety does the same thing, but vessels don't move.
The question then is:"Does increased blood flow make the vessels respond better to the laser treatment?" In vessels of any size, dilation increases the diameter of the vessel, and the resultant flow of blood through the vessel increases exponentially. If the diameter doubles, the cross-sectional area of the vessel is quadrupled, as is the flow rate per cross-sectional area. The laser works by heating the blood (absorption of the energy by the hemoglobin) enough to cause the rapid expansion of the blood (in the duration of the pulse of laser energy), which causes the vessel to burst and be destroyed. If a dilated vessel has enough increase in diameter to quadruple flow rates, then the energy needed to burst the vessel has increased four-fold as well. For extremely short shutter durations, which is what these lasers use, this may mean that vessels that would have been destroyed at their previous diameter and flow rates, may not have adequate energy to be destroyed at their higher flow rate. Consider that blood flow acts as a radiator (which is why you freeze to death faster if you drink alcohol and get lost outside in the winter); the more blood that flows through the target vessels, the more energy that is needed to destroy them. At a given laser setting, you may actually decrease vessel destruction by increasing vessel diameter and blood flow, carrying away the laser energy more effectively. Scientifically, this is called the thermal relaxation time, and it is vessel size-dependent.
Sorry to be so technical, but the short answer is that exercising or drinking alcohol before treatment will likely not have a beneficial effect on your laser treatment. In fact, it may decrease effectiveness!
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.