PDL: What is a Pulsed Dye Laser?
Pulsed Dye Lasers deliver an intense but gentle burst of light into selectively targeted areas of the skin. The light is absorbed by specific blood vessels or melanin pigmented areas in the dermis depending on the condition being treated. Factors such as the age, color and type of lesions, as well as the location on the body, all determine whether lesions can be removed.
PDL: What is the procedure for being treated with a Pulse Dye Laser?
Your practitioner will ensure you are as comfortable as possible; most patients are reclined or lying down depending on the area being treated. Both the patient and the practitioner will be wearing protective eyewear. When treatment begins, the laser will be calibrated and parameters will be set based on the specific condition being treated, each condition and each individual is unique and these settings maximize the results you will see following treatment.
PDL: Are there any requirements for treatment – how do I know if I qualify for treatment?
The only requirement is that you have a desire to improve the condition of your skin. Most patients who receive cosmetic laser treatment opt for procedures to correct skin conditions not out of medical necessity, but because they are interested in improving the appearance of their skin without invasive surgery that would cause downtime away from daily activities. From total facial rejuvenation which involves the reduction and removal of red and brown pigmented lesions with a general firming of the skin, to the removal of sun-spot damage, patients should discuss with their practitioner which treatments are right for them.
PDL: Does it hurt?
No anesthetics are required, but they may be used. The feeling most patients report is a warming or tingling sensation during treatment. The skin being treated is additionally protected by Candela’s dynamic cooling method, DCD, which delivers a cooling mist on to the skin before the laser pulse is emitted. This cooling mist increases comfort during treatment, as well as protects the skin to minimize side effects like redness.
PDL: Is PDL Treatment safe?
Yes. In fact, treatment is so safe that it has been successfully used since the 1980’s for the treatment of port wine stain birthmarks in infants and young children. During treatment, the epidermis is protected by Candela’s exclusive dynamic cooling method, DCD, which sprays a cooling mist onto the targeted area of skin before each laser pulse, maximizing comfort and protecting the skin during treatment.
PDL: Are the treatment results permanent?
Permanency of results depend on many factors, like the condition being treated, or lifestyle of the patient. For example, if a patient has sun spots removed, and continues to spend time in the sun without adequate skin protection, it is likely that the sun spots will return. Talk with your practitioner about your goals and expectations for treatment.
PDL: How soon will I see results of my treatment?
Most patients notice beneficial results right away, and often times feel a firming or tightening of the treated area. The results of laser therapy vary depending on the condition that is being treated and the number of treatments required for clearance.
PDL: What are the Side Effects of Treatment?
Some patients experience redness or mild swelling in the treated area immediately following treatment, this usually goes away in a few hours. Occasionally purpura, a laser bruise, may occur. Purpura is transient and usually disappears in three to five days.
PDL: Are there any special precautions I need to take before or after treatment?
It is recommended to avoid sun exposure before and throughout treatment to maximize results. A sunblock of SPF 30 or higher should be worn daily during this time. Post treatment care guidelines depend on the condition treated, and should be discussed with you practitioner.