Photo Peel, also known as Photodynamic Therapy or PDT, is a gentle, non-invasive treatment that uses a photosensitizing topical agent and light therapy to selectively target skin affected by sun damage, aging, acne, rosacea and precancerous lesions.
It’s major applications are:
- Aged, mature skin with fine and deeper lines, enlarged pores, pigmentation and motility.
- Rosacea, by itself or in combination with aged/mature skin.
- Acne, moderate to severe, partially controlled or non-responsive to topical therapies–a series of treatments can put acne into remission for months as well as reversing scarring without taking oral medications.
- Actinic Keratosis, premalignant growths in sun-exposed area like face, chest, arms and hands.
Treatment consists of a precise protocol that includes incubation of a photosensitizing agent, aminolevulinic acid (ALA), for about one hour, followed by activation with intense pulse light (IPL).
Treatment results are augmented with micro-dermabasion and Laser Genesis treatments done at each session, as well as chemical peels done between treatments.
Immediately post procedure, the area may show some redness and swelling and patient may feel burning and tingling, which can be relieved by application of ice packs and moisturizing, repairing creams.
Post procedure pain is minimal, but flushing of the skin and peeling are expected, and can last up to one week. Also, sun-spots and freckles will become temporarily darker, which will resolve in 2 weeks with mild peeling or flaking, revealing a lighter skin.
Occasionally, some patients may have an exuberant response to treatment with more discomfort, marked redness, temporary swelling of the lips and around the eyes, lasting five to fourteen days.
After each session, the patient will experience some improvement in skin tone and texture, decrease in overall redness and flushing in rosacea patients, fading of sunspots, shrinking of pores, gradual decrease of fine lines and wrinkles as new collagen forms within the dermis.
Acne patients will experience fewer lesions, dryer skin and scars will be smoother, lighter and less visible with each treatment.
Number of Treatments
The number of treatments varies from patient to patient and with the severity and type of condition. Generally, we have seen that 3-4 treatments are required by most patients, at 3-5 weeks interval.
Re-evaluation is key at each clinical visit, and will determine necessity of additional treatments.
Maintenance therapy may be required on a yearly basis.
Post Treatment Restrictions
Normal activities can be resumed immediately after treatment.
Very important – patient must avoid direct or reflected daylight for 48 hours after peels as the therapy has rendered them photo-sensitive (not just ultra-violet sensitive). If not strictly followed, hyper-pigmentation and burning is likely to occur.
Direct sunlight should be avoided for up to 3 weeks and an SPF of minimum 30 should be used daily for 4 months.
Skin may feel dry and tight as of day 2-3 post procedure and a good moisturizer should be applied daily.
Post procedure maintenance
Topical products are required to maintain and prolong the results.