THREAD VEINS AND ROSACEA
Facial thread veins or broken veins (telangiectasia) are small unsightly superficial red, purple or blue veins that usually occur around the nose but can spread out onto the cheeks. Thread veins occur when the vein dilates and becomes large enough to be visible through the transparency of the skin.
They are caused by a variety of factors including exposure to sunlight, wind and the extremes of temperature. The over use of steroid creams and certain auto immune conditions may also induce thread veins. Often the exact cause is unknown.
Rosacea is a condition involving the face that results in a ‘blush’ or redness and progresses from intermittent to consistent. It is associated with prominent blood vessels, open pores and skin eruption similar to acne. Symptoms usually commence between the ages of 30 to 50.
Avoidance of triggering stimuli including heat, vigorous exercise, alcohol consumption, spicy foods, hot beverages (particularly caffeine) and rubbing the affected skin helps control symptoms partially. Conventional medical treatment involves either topical antibiotics or oral antibiotics both of which often have limited effects.HOW DOES THE TREATMENT WORK?
Intense pulsed light (IPL) is broadband light and delivers hundreds of wavelengths (or colours) in a single discharge. IPL are able to specifically target blood (haemoglobin) in the skin without damaging surrounding tissues. The light energy is absorbed by blood inside the veins, heating up the vessel wall, which collapses and then dissolves. IPL is more suitable for large areas of diffuse redness or fine ‘blushes’ of vessels.HOW MANY TREATMENTS ARE NEEDED?
A series of 3 to 6 treatments is recommended at monthly intervals for facial veins.
All pigmented lesions contain melanin, it conveys colour to hair and skin and functions to protect the skin from sun exposure (ultraviolet radiation). The quantity of melanin in the skin is increased by sunlight, resulting in the process known as tanning. Lasers are effectively used for the treatment of pigmented lesions because they can selectively damage or destroy the darker area with little or no damage to the surrounding skin. Laser light is absorbed by the pigment melanin, where it is converted into heat causing break-up of the darker areas.
Lasers are ideal for treating the following pigment problems:-
- Brown age spots (also called liver spots or solar lentigines) are pigment accumulations in the upper layer of the skin due to sun exposure. They occur on the face, neck, chest and back as well as forearms and hands.
- Freckles (epithelides) are small spots of concentrated pigment stimulated by the sun that remain in stable locations on sun exposed areas.
- Café-au-lait spots are the light brown colour of milky coffee; they can be small or large and appear on any part of the body.
Laser light is absorbed by the pigment melanin, where it is converted to heat causing break-up of the darker areas. Because only the darker area is precisely targeted by the laser the surrounding areas are not harmed.CAN ALL SKIN COLOURS BE TREATED?
We do not treat pigment problems on darker skin types due to the high risk of hypopigmentation (lightening of the skin’s complexion).Treatments are limited to lighter skin types I-III.IS THE TREATMENT PAINFUL?
The energy is delivered in very short flashes of laser light called pulses. As the laser light pulses impact onto the skin’s surface the sensation is similar to the snap of a thin rubber band. The procedure only produces mild discomfort.ARE THERE ANY AFTER-EFFECTS FOLLOWING THE TREATMENT?
Within 5-10 minutes of treatment, mild redness (erythema), mild swelling (oedema) and darkening of the lesion (hyperpigmentation) will be evident around the treated lesions. The mild redness and swelling may be evident for several hours, it is similar to sunburn and usually does not interfere with daily activities. There is usually no blistering or bruising. The lesion will continue to darken and exfoliate for several weeks.WHAT TYPE OF POST-TREATMENT SKIN CARE IS NECESSARY?
Following and throughout the course of laser treatment, the treated skin is sensitized to sunlight. It is essential that a broad spectrum (UVA/UVB) sunscreen SPF 30 or greater is used daily.
Throughout life, acne has physically and emotionally scarred millions. It is the most common skin condition with an incidence of over 90% in adolescents. Acne may however appear for the first time in the mid twenties, or even later, and persist in a significant number of people into their forties or even fifties.
Lasers emit high energy at one specific wavelength (or colour) in a single beam of light. Intense pulsed light (IPL) is broadband light energy that delivers hundreds of wavelengths (or colours) in a single discharge. This light is passed through filters to produce blue light at wavelengths 420-950nm. The advantage of blue light IPL is it enables very large areas to be treated quickly, safely and effectively.HOW DOES THE TREATMENT WORK?
- The blue light kills the acne bacteria (P.Acnes) that cause the infection leading to spots.
- Theblue light gently heats up the skin around the spots, producing collagen that boosts the healing process causing the spots to disappear.
A series of 6-8 treatments are recommended over a 4 week period. Following this, it is envisaged that further ‘top up’ treatments may be required.ARE THERE ANY SIDE EFFECTS?
In rare cases redness and irritation of the treated area may occur (like sunburn). There is also a small risk of pigment change following treatment. A small minority of patients develop bruising and blistering. This settles within a few days.CAN ALL AREAS OF THE BODY BE TREATED AND DOES SKIN COLOUR MAKE A DIFFERENCE?
All areas of the body can be treated. Most skin types can be treated as skin colour makes little difference to the benefits of the procedure.HOW SOON WILL I SEE AN IMPROVEMENT?
On average in 2-4 weeks the number of active acne lesions has usually significantly reduced.