IPL Was Painful, with Awful, Lumpy Swelling Afterward - Dallas, TX

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I'm a 56 y/o male who had benign skin cancer...

I'm a 56 y/o male who had benign skin cancer removed on my cheek 7 months ago. It resulted in some broken capilaries. I also had a small degree of sun damage. My PS recommended an IPL Photofacial. I had the procedure done on December 30. It was recommended that I forego numbing cream for a better result. I did, and the procedure was so painful I was gripping the side of the bed. I have a high tolerance for pain, since I had Ultherapy done when it was first introduced and have had Restylane injections under my eyes in the past, but this was extreme.

I was also advised that I would be red (like a sunburn) for an hour afterward and that there might be minor swelling. That was not the case. The same day, my face had extremely lumpy swelling that looked like very bad acne scarring or the skin of a burn victim. I had read the next day would be worse, and it was. I couldn't leave the house. Only today, 3 days later, do I look relatively normal, and even now there is pretty significant swelling.

I think part of the reason for the extreme swelling is that men have strong beard follicles and IPL tends to swell worse around the follicles. Anyway, at the rate the swelling is subsiding I estimate it will take a full week to be back to normal. I'm posting this because of the many comments made from doctors that there will be slight swelling and that most patients can return to work the same day. I didn't even look halfway presentable until 3 days after the procedure, and I was completely freaked out that the swelling was lumpy and that I couldn't really find anything about this in this forum.

The good news is that even the lumps do go away, and I can already see improvement in the pigmented areas. I feel that it worked, but I don't think I would do it again.

Day 5, and most of the lumpiness and swelling are gone

My skin still isn't as smooth as it was prior to the treatment, but I can see definite progress. Also, the red spots are starting to disappear. I think my skin will look great after the healing takes place.
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