Rosacea and the Use of Intense Pulse Light Therapy

Submitted by admin on Sun, 09/01/2013 - 00:00

Rosacea is a type of skin inflammation that typically affects the central area of the face. It is not contagious and a common condition that affects both men and women alike. Rosacea is identified by three things ñ red pimples and pustules, increased flushing, and permanent dilated blood vessels- and extreme changes in temperature, stress and diet can cause Rosacea to flare. A trip to your GP can determine the severity of your Rosacea and he will be able to recommend you the best course of treatment.

Rosacea Treatment

Treatment of Rosacea varies and is dependent on what triggers your Rosacea and how severe your symptoms are. In some cases, a lifestyle adjustment will help avoid the flare-up of Rosacea. If the signs of Rosacea are still apparent, then the next step to treat it is with topical products. It can take 8 to 10 weeks to for these products to clear your skin.

More severe cases will need the addition of prescription oral antibiotics, on top of the topical products. It helps reduce the inflammation that accompanies acne, dilated blood vessels, and swollen cheeks. The oral antibiotic is given only for a certain length of time after which you are weaned off when the severe symptoms have diminished. You will then be left to continue with topical treatment.

Sometimes, after Rosacea flare-ups have been successfully treated, you may still be left with persistent redness and unresolvable blood vessels. To help improve the appearance, treatments like Intense Pulse Light (IPL) Therapy can help significantly.

Intense Pulse Light Therapy for Rosacea

What it is

Unlike other laser treatments, IPL uses non-light sources to safely reduce the flushing, redness, dilated blood vessels, and acne-like breakouts associated with Rosacea. The treatment targets the blood vessels under the skin, heating them up to 70 degrees Celsius and causing them break down. Destroyed blood vessels are then reabsorbed by the bodyís natural defense mechanism. Following treatment, patients experience reduced redness, less flushing, fewer breakouts and improved skin texture.

The Costs

IPL requires a course of 3 to 6 treatments and each session can cost anywhere between $300 and $500. Depending on your skin type, a 4 to 6 week interval may be needed between sessions to achieve best result which can significantly improve your quality of life. There is no downtime involved after the procedure, but with most treatments there are side effects to consider.

Side Effects

Side effects of IPL include some redness, blistering, bruising, swelling, pain, burning sensation, and hair loss at the area of treatment. Though rare, skin lightening may also be experienced. The good news is that these side effects do fade after a while.

Success Factor

Success of IPL depends on several factors ñ your skin type, skin condition, lifestyle and the level of after-care you get following the treatment. Sun protection is essential after a procedure, and if youíre not careful, can make your Rosacea worse. While not a cure, IPL offers long lasting results which may or may not need additional treatments at a later time. Keep in mind, that some people may not be suitable candidates for IPL, such as those with medical conditions that may increase the risk of infection or problems with healing.


In all, there are many benefits to IPL as a treatment for Rosacea. Side effects are short-lived and results are long lasting. If you have tried topical and oral antibiotics with little success, and believe Intense Pulse Light Therapy is the right choice for you, be sure to discuss this option thoroughly with your GP or dermatologist first. To see some detailed information about Rosacea and IPL therapy, click here.