A Photofacial is a skin treatment that uses light-based technology (IPL - Intense Pulse Light) to boost collagen and reduce age lines, lighten brown spots and diminish broken capillaries to reduce redness. It is also called as Fotofacial or IPL Photorejuvenation.

Mechanism of Action:

  1. IPL targets melanin, haemoglobin, and water and is useful in treating hyperpigmentary epidermal and dermal changes during photo rejuvenation.
  2. It also causes microthermal injury in the upper dermis and induces wound healing process leading to neocollagenesis and dermal remodelling.
  3. Clinical end point is the immediate darkening of the dyschromia affected areas. It causes mild tightening effects and shows an improvement in dyschromic pigmentation, skin tone, and texture along with the reduction in pore size.

PRE PROCEDURE PLAN:

  1. A detailed history of herpes labialis, keloidal tendency, drugs (oral contraceptives, photosensitizing, and treatments taken in the past.
  2. Sun restriction and sunscreen 4-6 week prior to the treatment (if treating sun-exposed area).
  3. Patient information and counselling – Informing the patient about the procedure, its side effects, number of sittings required, cost of photofacial in Chandigarh etc.
  4. Clinical evaluation of indication for which IPL is being used, local examination of the skin, and assessment of skin type of the patient should be carried out. This is important, as patients with dark skin require proper selection of IPL parameters.

Procedure:

1. Clean and shave area to be treated, if required.

2. Apply a thick coat of chilled water based gel over the skin of the area to be treated.

3. Ask the patient to close the eyes, further cover them with eyes protective IPL-specific goggles.

4. Technique:

 

  1. The handpiece is held perpendicular and flush to the skin surface coated with gel.
  2. The handpiece is moved sequentially so as to cover the complete area (single pass).
  3. The normal immediate response will vary from lesion being treated. Usually it is blanching followed by slight redness after some time.

Post Procedure Precautions:

  1. Ice packs are very rarely required to reduce postoperative pain/swelling.
  2. Special cocktail of topical preparations - creams/ gels/ serums are prescribed by the dermatologist as per the indication and skin type to enhance the results of the procedure.
  3. Patient is instructed to use sunscreen and avoid sun exposure.

SCHEDULE:

Multiple session usually 4-8 at 3 weeks interval are required to achieve optimum results in a photorejuvenation therapy.

BENEFITS OF PHOTOFACIAL:

  1. It improves only superficial rhytides.
  2. Photofacial is a very safe procedure with almost no downtime.
  3. However, moderate-to-severe (deep) rhytides do not show much improvement, unless combined with other modalities such anti wrinkle injections or dermal fillers.