Intense pulsed light ( IPL) is a technology used by cosmetic and medical practitioners to perform various skin treatments for aesthetic and therapeutic purposes, including hair removal, photorejuvenation (e.g. the treatment of skin pigmentation, sun damage, and thread veins) as well as to alleviate dermatologic diseases such as acne.
The technology uses a high-powered, hand-held, computer-controlled flashgun to deliver an intense, visible, broad-spectrum pulse of light, generally in the visible spectral range of 400 to 1200 nm. Various cutoff filters are commonly used to selectively filter out lower wavelengths, especially potentially damaging ultra violet light. The resulting light has a spectral range that targets specific structures and chromophores (e.g. melanin in hair, or oxyhemoglobin in blood vessels) that are heated to destruction and reabsorbed by the body.
Remove Age Spots: Aging has three main factors: genetics, time and environment. While you can’t change what kind of skin you inherit or the number of years on your calendar, Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) treatments can dramatically improve appearance by removing visible cues like age spots.
Alleviate Rosacea: If you suffer from the chronic redness and flushing that characterize facial rosacea, you know how aggravating this condition can be, and how it can negatively affect so much of your life. IPL offers a practically painless and long-term solution for rosacea treatment. Results that will not only change how you look…but how you feel.
Eliminate Birthmarks. Most birthmarks are harmless, and many fade away in the first few years of life. But for those that persist, IPL offers a revolutionary birthmark treatment that completely avoids the complications and side effects of alternative options like corticosteroid medications, surgery and freezing.
The first use of a specific IPL system developed for hair removal is reported in the literature in 1997. Hair count reduction was found to be ~60 % (12 weeks), 75 % (1 year), 60 % (2 year). Various treatment protocols have been studied.
It is important to note that these studies utilized a variety of IPL devices on various skin areas, and used patients with varying hair and skin types. Thus the results are not directly comparable. In evaluating these results it is also important to remember that even a reduction of 75 % indicates that 25 % of the hair regrew after treatment. Permanent hair removal in these studies, as defined by the FDA, means the “long-term, stable reduction in the number of hairs regrowing after a treatment regime”.
IPL may also be helpful for mild to moderate acne and stretch marks.