After four laser acne treatments, I am actually a bit disappointed by the results. At this time, I can neither approve or disapprove of vbeam plus smoothbeam.
My face is on the brink of a full-scale breakout. If my face does not get any worse, then I would definitely recommend the treatment. However, if it gets worse, then obviously, I'm not going to recommend.
At this exact moment of writing, my face is a little bit worse than it would be if I was on antibiotics. I have been off of them for 7 weeks, and usually after 6-8 weeks, you'll see breakouts again.
I had a huge flare-up from about July 12 - 20. During this time frame, I was drinking AT LEAST 1/3 gallon of milk a day. (<--- my mom bought me my favorite cereal, what can I say? I just couldn't resist.) I since went back to 1/8 gallon or less, and my face has improved (in addition to lots of sun).
There was no talk with me and the doctor about a fifth session. I didn't ask. During the consultation, he told me a fifth session would be ideal six months down the road after my fourth session. I am possibly considering going for a fifth session sooner. Some people claim that they had to do 6 before they saw any results. The question is, do I want to risk another $1350 to find out? (My doctor is a little bit on the high-side. In hindsight, it wasn't worth it.)
Currently, I am still using the sulfur wash. I am also taking 4 tablets of 400mg vitamin e, 4 tablets of 30 mg zinc, a multivitamin, fish oil, and b12 supplement (I break them up throughout the day). I also apply about 4-5 tablets of the vitamin e topically to me face.
Well, I just hope I didn't waste my money. I'll be back with updates on whether or not I do the fifth session, and how my face does.
Where to start?
My last laser acne treatment was on the 12th of June.
I have been off of minocycline since the 5th only because I ran out.
I have been using sodium sulfacetamide daily.
I only had 3 bad pimples in the past month, and I used some retina on them.
I also use vitamin e all over my face, and it definitely seems to help.
I am very pleased with the results. I have one more treatment left.
I do not know if it is the sodium sulfacetamide or the laser acne treatment that has helped the most. I don't want to stop the sodium sulfacetamide to find out.
I just completed my second session last Monday of vbeam perfecta and smoothbeam. Is the $1300 worth it so far? I really can't tell. (1300 is on the high side, but the Doctor is very reputable.)
A little bit about Doctor skill: I don't think you need to get the best Doctor in your area...just not the worst. I mean, my Doctor knows how to prevent bruising...but it's not failsafe. Every now and then, some of his patients do get bruising. But, some experts say bruising helps the treatment. Now, are they saying that because bruising is inevitable and want to make you feel good? Who knows. I think it's just a matter of genetics if you're going to bruise or not. My doctor said that I was most likely going to bruise, but I didn't.
Anyways, the main reason I'm shelling out a few extra hundred dollars for Doctor Bernstein is because he is constantly running new clinical studies. He's working on testing new technologies and seeing if they actually work. Hey, if someone said $2000 and 100% guarantee that you'll be at least 90% clear, wouldn't you take it? But, I also like to aim for the best doctors in my area. It's my skin, and I don't want to risk it because I'm too stingy.
Ok, onto results: Most of the improvements in my acne is probably due to the acne regimen I am on (see below) and not so much due to the laser acne treatment. The last time I was on a similar acne regimen, my face has been clearer than it is now. It did take me 4-6 months to get that clear, and I've only been on my current one for two months now. So, right now, my face is not as clear as it once used to be. That worries me. How much clearer is the laser acne treatment actually going to help me achieve?
And, even after all four sessions, my doctor said I still have to stay on an acne regimen (but possibly minus the antibiotics). I mean, you should be washing your face daily, but why can't soap be enough?!?
I think the sodium sulfacetamide has helped the most. (Read the reviews on here about it). The retin-a has actually helped rebuild my collagen. I noticed that. It gives my face a nice, vibrant glow.
oh whoops forgot i was typing this. I'll edit it later. Ok, edited. Probably still have some mistakes and such, but oh well. This is just for informational purposes only.
The Vbeam Perfecta and Smoothbeam were used on my face. No numbing cream was applied before. It's been 3 days. I did not have any bruising. Dr. Bernstein of Ardmore, Pa, north of Philly (Philadelphia), said he would try to not bruise. He is very excellent Doctor.
My only complaint is that he did not use the lasers on my neck. I asked him to use the lasers on one huge pimple on my neck, but he did not use the lasers anywhere else. Sure enough, the next day, I am getting a few pimples on my neck (not his fault, but from shaving!)
I did not notice any improvements from the laser acne treatment. My acne has been improving as a result of the combination of acne medicine I am on.
I'll post back after my 2nd treatment in a month.
A little about myself: 20, male, attending Rutgers in New Brunswick. I am from New Jersey. I had acne since I was about 13. I tried a handful of products. I was on minocycline for just about 3 years, but that would only keep me 80% clear at best. Tried using benozyl peroxide face wash, benozyl peroxide cream / gel, differin, and doxcycline. Without any treatment, I get moderate to severe cystic acne.
I am going to get laser acne treatment. The Doctor I will be seeing is Dr. Bernstein of www.dermguy.com. Due to the possibility of flare-ups, he said I have to go on an antibiotic again. He also recommended in his professional opinion to save me a few thousand that I go on accutane, but I told him I was against that, and hence, why I was here for laser acne treatment.
I am now on sodium sulfacetamide, retin-A, and minocycline 100mg 2x daily.