Intense Pulsed Light Therapy for Aging Skin
Learn more about treatment options for aging skin.
Intense pulsed light therapy is a non-ablative treatment
option. It uses an intense but gentle beam of light to treat aging skin
conditions without damaging surrounding tissue. Pain and recovery time are
Why choose intense pulsed light therapy for aging skin
Laser/light therapy can be used to lessen the appearance of
such aging skin conditions as:
As with any treatment, there are risks associated it, though
they are minimized in the hands of a qualified ASDS dermatologist. These include:
The average cost for intense pulsed light therapy is about
$700 to $1,200. Since this type of therapy is considered a cosmetic procedure,
treatment usually isn’t covered by most medical insurance companies. Factors
affecting cost include:
- Type of skin condition being treated.
- Size of skin condition being treated.
- Location of skin condition being treated.
- Number of offices visits required for treatment.
- Need for anesthesia, tests or prescriptions.
How to prepare for the procedure
Before the procedure, an ASDS dermatologist will usually review the
patient’s medical history and conduct a physical exam. This is the time for the
doctor and patient to discuss expectations, potential risks and outcomes of the
procedure. Patients also should:
- Avoid sunbathing, tanning beds, waxing, chemical peels or
collagen injections for two weeks prior to the procedure.
- Avoid perfumes, deodorants or any potential irritants in the
treatment area before and after treatment.
- Avoid aspirin, anti-inflammatory drugs and herbal
supplements due to increased risk of bleeding.
What to expect after the procedure
Patients may not see any significant changes until several weeks
after the surgery. Other post-procedure issues include:
- Treated area may be pink or red for four to eight hours or
longer after treatment.
- A slight stinging sensation, similar to a mild sunburn in
the treated area. This sensation usually subsides within four to six hours.
Cool packs or moist cloths may be applied to reduce the sensation.
- Mild swelling in the treatment area that usually dissipates
within several days.
In addition, patients should:
- Avoid applying makeup or lotion to the treated area for
either 24 hours or until all signs or redness and stinging have dissipated.
- Apply a good moisturizing lotion to the treated area twice
daily for the duration of the treatments and for at least three months after
Find a doctor for your aging skin treatment
Visit “Find a dermatologic surgeon” and choose "Light
Therapy” from the dropdown menu. In 2013, ASDS dermatologists performed nearly 2.25 million laser/light/energy-based procedures, up from 1.68 million in 2012. Because ASDS dermatologists are trained in a
variety of the best and latest techniques, they are the most qualified to
evaluate and select the best treatment choice based on the individual patient’s