Tag Archives: Austin laser resurfacing

Lasers and Intense Pulsed Light (IPL)  – Austin, TX

Lasers and Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) Austin, TX

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lasers and Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) can provide excellent results in the treatment of a long list of skin problems.

  • Rosacea
  • Fine Lines and Wrinkles
  • Sun Damage
  • Loss of Skin Tone
  • Spider Veins
  • Cherry Angiomas
  • Port Wine Stains
  • Melasma or Hyperpigmentation
  • Keloids/Scars
  • Freckles
  • Tattoo Removal
  • Pigmented Lesions
  • Blood Vessels on the Face, Neck and Chest
  • Hair Removal
  • Precancerous Cells
  • Acne and Acne Scarring

There are many lasers and IPL choices. A laser is a source of high-intensity light tuned to a specific single wavelength. IPL, on the other hand, delivers a broader spectrum of wavelengths, rather than the single wavelength of a laser. The light energy is preferentially absorbed by target tissue selected for treatment, such as blood vessels, tattooed skin, a brown spot, or hair follicles, for example (see list above). The absorbed energy produces heat in the target tissues.

Optimal treatment requires not only the selection of an appropriate laser or IPL, but also proper settings and technique. Here are 7 factors your doctor should be thinking about carefully when planning your treatment.

1.    Are You a Good Candidate?

Your doctor, in consultation with you, must establish that you are likely to benefit from treatment. Then, in addressing your particular requirements, your doctor will customize your procedure.

2.   Are We on the Right Wavelength?

Your doctor must choose the correct light device to obtain the best outcome. The optimal wavelength will be well absorbed as it is pulsed over the target. The aim is to destroy the target, but not harm surrounding tissue. Also, as different wavelengths penetrate to different depths, the depth of the target must also be considered.

3.   How Much Light Energy?

How much energy to apply to the pulse of light? Too little energy will not adequately destroy the target or deliver long-term success. Too much will cause collateral damage to surrounding tissues. Your optimal energy level should be within the therapeutic window, giving good results but not causing collateral damage.

4.   Shorter or Longer Pulse Duration?

The duration of the light pulse should be selected based on what’s being treated, the size of the target, and type of laser.

5.   What’s Your Skin Type?

Your skin type is important is determining wavelength, pulse duration, and light energy level. Darker skin colors tend to absorb more light energy. This tendency increases the risk for burns, unless appropriate adjustments are made. This pertains especially to patients with a tan. If you have a tan, you will get better results with less risk of complications if you schedule your treatment after the tan fades.

6.   How to Stay Cool?

Cooling techniques are used in most laser and light procedures to reduce discomfort as well as the risk of skin injury. The most common methods of cooling include chilled air, cryogen spray, and contact cooling.

7.   What Are Potential Side Effects and Risks?

Your doctor will inform you of potential side effects and the likelihood of their occurrence for your specific situation and procedure. Some possible side effect include:

  • Temporary pain, redness, bruising, blistering and/or crusting
  • Infection, including reactivation of herpes simplex
  • Pigment changes (brown and white marks), which may be permanent
  • Scarring, rare when treatment is performed properly
  • Eye injury, which is why appropriate goggles must be worn

In expert hands, the risks of a laser and IPL treatments are small. Be sure you are treated by a qualified and experienced practitioner to avoid the more severe risks associated with treatment by untrained, inexperienced, or unethical personnel.

If you’re considering laser treatment, Zimmet Vein & Dermatology can help determine if laser is a good option for you. We have years of training and experience in the use of medical lasers for dermatology and vein conditions. Contact us today to make an appointment.


					

Have you ever considered a cosmetic dermatology procedure, but had a question you couldn’t find the answer to online?  Can you really trust the information you find on Yahoo Answers, Twitter or Google?  Here’s your chance to ask a cosmetic dermatology expert!  Every month, Dr. Zimmet will provide up-to-date answers to frequently asked skincare & cosmetic dermatology questions submitted to his blog.

May’s topic is Fractional CO2 Laser Resurfacing.

Does laser resurfacing hurt?

Laser resurfacing feels hot. We find that it’s pretty well tolerated with good topical anesthestics that are applied an hour before the treatment, along with local anesthetic nerve blocks and a cold air blower (Zimmer Chiller). We also offer Xanax to help you relax and a pain medication, if desired.

Why take Valtrex before CO2 fractional laser?

Valtrex is used to prevent a herpes fever blister outbreak. Many, if not most physicians recommend this for all patients undergoing facial resurfacing, even if there is no history of fever blisters.

What are pre-op instructions for fractional C02 laser?

Below is Dr. Zimmet’s fractionated CO2 (Active/Deep FX) pre-op care instructions:

-Avoid sun exposure and self-tanning cream for 4 weeks

-Avoid topical exfoliation for 2 weeks

-Understand the post-op care, and prepare by getting old pillowcases, shirts, etc

-Start the antiviral (Zovirax, Valtrex), if prescribed, the day before the procedure

– Eat a meal the morning of the procedure

-Shower and wash your face with an anti-bacterial soap

-Shampoo your hair

-Wear an old button-down shirt

Women (morning of procedure):

Do not use make-up, mascara, lipstick, lotions

Don’t wear jewelry

Do not use hair products of any kind

Do not use perfume

Men(morning of procedure)

Do not use any lotions on your face

Do not use hair products

Shave areas to be treated

What are post treatment instructions for fractional CO2 treatment?

Your physician should provide clear and preferably written instructions on how to care for your skin. The most important things are to apply Aquaphor to the treated area several times a day, and to be very gentle with your skin. Check out our survival guide for fractionated CO2 resurfacing.

Will I experience skin dryness after fractional C02 laser?

Your skin may ooze for the first day or so. We recommend Aquaphor ointment to speed healing. Without Aquaphor ointment, your skin would become very dry. Letting your skin dry out will greatly impede healing, so the Aquaphor or similar ointment is very important.

Can I use Cerave moisturizer after laser resurfacing?

I recommend nothing but Aquaphor ointment until your skin peels, generally about 5-6 days for the face. Following this, we advise SkinCeuticals Epidermal Repair for about 1-2 weeks.  Beyond 2 weeks, we recommend daily application of moisturizers like Cerave or Cetaphil.

What is the recovery time for fractionated CO2?

Recovery time depends on the area treated, the depth/aggressiveness of treatment and on the individual. Generally you can expect the following for the initial major healing phase: Face 5-6 days, Neck 7-10 days, Chest 10-14 days.

Should I ice my face after CO2 fractional laser?

Cold compresses or ice packs can help reduce the sunburn sensation that is typical the first day after treatment, and help reduce swelling.

Should I lay down after fractional laser?

You may be tired after the treatment, and laying down is fine. However, I do recommend sleeping with your head elevated for a couple of days, to help minimize facial swelling.

What are some tips for healing from C02 active laser?

The most important things are to apply Aquaphor to the treated area several times  a day, and to be very gentle with your skin. Your physician should provide clear and preferably written instructions on how to care for your skin. Check out our survival guide for fractionated CO2 resurfacing.

When does peeling start after fractional C02?

Peeling can start within a day or so, and is usually completed by day 5-6.

What does it look like when you have fractionated C02?

Your skin will usually be rather red for about a week, with gradual fading over a several week period. In my experience things look much better once the treated skin is fully peeled, usually about 5-6 days after treatment. There may be some oozing the first day, and swelling may be present the first few days. Learn more by reading our laser resurfacing diary.

Why does your face itch after fractional laser?

Itching is very common after fractionated CO2 resurfacing. The underlying cause probably relates to nerve signals stimulated by the inflammation and healing process. Medication such as Benadryl may be recommended if the itching is significant, but don’t drive or do similar activites as Benadryl can cause drowsiness.

Photo: By Craig Cloutier


by Clare Sargent

It’s been a little more than three months since I had the laser Active FX resurfacing procedure at Dr. Zimmet’s office. I am happier than ever with the results. My skin has never looked better. It has continued to improve since I had the procedure. The thing I notice most is that my skin is tighter overall than it was before. Because the treatment stimulates collagen formation, it should continue to improve for a year. Friends who know that I had the treatment and who don’t see me every day have remarked that they can see the difference from month to month. It’s been very gratifying to receive lots of nice compliments on my skin.

The only regret that I have is that I didn’t have the treatment done on my neck at the same time. A friend of mine is about to have the laser FX treatment on her face, neck AND chest. We are about the same age, and one of her main complaints is sun damage including large freckles and brown spots on her skin. I look forward to seeing her results. I sort-of jokingly told Dr. Zimmet that if money were not an object I would have had the treatment on my entire body. That would have made for an interesting recovery!

Clearly, I would recommend the laser FX treatment to almost anyone. The discomfort was minimal, and the results have been totally worth it. Seven days in the house was an investment, but I was prepared for it and it went by quickly. I would definitely do it again. Thank you to everyone for reading my laser FX diary and for your comments. This has been a fun and rewarding adventure.

We are proud to announce that Best Doctors® has informed Dr Zimmet that he has been elected by his peers for inclusion in Best Doctors in America® from 2011 to 2012 in dermatology/phlebology. Best Doctors, based in Boston, Massachusetts, was founded in 1989 by physicians affiliated with the Harvard Medical School to provide expert medical consultation services. Best Doctors is improving the quality and cost of healthcare by giving individuals access to these consultations. A group of well-recognized experts serve as their medical leadership.

Taken with iPhone, day 7.


It’s Day 7 and I am going about my normal activities. So far, no one has pointed and/or gasped. Without the ointment now my face feels tight and very, very smooth. Still a tiny bit of peeling and the one bruise over my right eyebrow still slightly visible. I’m obsessed with being covered with sunscreen, and yet still, for the few minutes I’m in really intense sun walking to my car between meetings, I’m paranoid about my tender new skin. I put on sunscreen at 6:30 in the morning to walk the dog–that’s new. I’m carrying sunscreen in my car in case I need to re-apply, or ever forget to put it on in the first place (unlikely).

Continue reading


No ointment, yay!

Night 5 was the worst. It was the first night that I didn’t sleep well, I tossed and turned so much that I rubbed most of the ointment off and had to get up in the middle of the night to re-apply. I also managed to get lots of it in my hair—so much so that when I washed my hair the next day it didn’t come out completely. I also realized last night that I was really  not going to be able to go to my morning meeting. Not only was my face still too red, I’d developed a bruise around my right eyelid. I emailed Dr. Zimmet about it, he said that it was probably from one of the nerve block shots, and that bruising was rare but not unheard of. I agonized all evening about whether to call in sick for my 8 a.m. meeting, and at 11 p.m. decided to email my client and reschedule. I never do that—unless I’m contagious I’ll go to meetings when I’m sick to avoid rescheduling—but I just didn’t see how I was going to able to sit across from my client in the bright light of Starbuck’s at 8 a.m. Continue reading

Post-procedure Day 5

I’m definitely not ready for public consumption yet. And I’m about to see only the second person I will have allowed to see me since this began—an ex-boyfriend from college, now friend, who is in town from Fort Worth. I’ve over-warned him about how I look. I look better than yesterday, even, but there is still a very obvious line at my jaw where the procedure began and my face is red and peeling. A couple of places look kind of yellow-ish, almost like old bruises healing. I’m trying to think positively about tomorrow, because I don’t think I can call in sick for these meetings in the morning. I’ll be able to wash my face three times between now and then, but I can’t imagine it’s going to be OK to wear makeup yet. The instructions say to keep using the ointment until I’m not peeling anymore. But I definitely can’t go to the meeting with my face all covered with ointment—that just isn’t an option. I’m supposed to go for one more follow-up visit at Dr. Zimmet’s tomorrow but that won’t be until after my two morning meetings. I’m just going to have to suck it up and go, I guess. I’m having an early dinner tomorrow night at Uchi with friends—at least it’s somewhat dark in there and I can try to have my hair down around my face. Thank goodness I have long hair!

Yesterday I was super-excited about how tight my skin looked, especially my eyelids, around my mouth and eyes. Continue reading

Dr. Zimmet is using a better camera than I've been using, so this photo is a great representation of how red I look on the fourth day after the laser FX treatment.

Big changes today. Lots of skin peeling. It’s hard to keep my hands off my face. Still a little puffy, and red/brown on most of my face, and most noticeable around the edges. Bright pink where skin has peeled off on my cheeks. I took this picture last night realizing that it shows the most contrast. I had my first post-procedure check-in with Dr. Zimmet this morning. (Either he or someone from his office has called me every day to check on me, which has been really nice.) He said everything looks good, to keep the ointment on at all times. He affirmed that I should be gently washing my face. Today I realized that I have a meeting two days from now and I am NOT going to want to be out in public. I still have two full days, and Dr. Zimmet said that once the peeling starts in earnest that the way I look will rapidly improve, but he agreed that I probably won’t want to be at this 8 a.m. meeting on Day 6. I’m going to try not to worry too much about it today. Continue reading

If anything I look worse today. The white area around my eyebrows is very visible in the sea of red/brown that is my face. Pictures are not doing it justice. I’ve tried to get close-ups but with or without the flash it’s just not showing how crusty I really look. I can totally see why the instructions repeat several times to use old sheets and pillowcases. My pillowcases are totally gross when I wake up. I’m going through lots of washcloths and towels as I’m washing my face four times a day as instructed. My face feels a little bit sore, mostly when I touch it. My skin is tight—I can really feel the tightness when I frown or wrinkle my nose. Also itchier today.

Here is a video about the procedure:

Here is the Active FX post-procedure regime (given to me in writing the day of the procedure): Continue reading

Skin Vein