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Well, I'll briefly describe my situation. I'm half arabic, half dutch so have an olive type skin tone. I've had cystic acne since I was 16. It wasn't too severe but I'd get a couple painful monsters monthly along with you regular white/black heads. Three months ago I was prescribed Triaz, Ziana and Doxycycline in order to cure the cysts for good. Well it has worked to an extent but I still have a good amount of flesh colored bumps on my forehead along with your 4-5 inflamed spots at times on both my forehead and checks. This doesn't bother me too much and I'm sticking to the regimen hoping to clear up the more stubborn acne. What has been bothering me are all the red marks, hyperpigmentated spots and acne scaring that had been left behind. I went to cosmetic place today and had the IPL Profacial done. It didn't hurt and I was left with absolutely no redness. I just have some questions that I'm hoping the kind people on this board can answer.

A.) I'm scheduled to have my second IPL next week. I've read that they are usually spread across three week intervals. Why am I allowed to get my next one so soon?

B.) I'm not allowed to use my BP wash and Ziana 24 hours before and after the IPL, I'm scared I'm going to break out. Can I still take my Doxycycline?

C.) Is it a bad idea to do the IPL treatments while I still have active acne?

D.) Has anyone here had success evening out skin tone with the IPL on these boards?

Thanks for taking the time to read this, Merry Xmas!

Edited by SameSongAndDance

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I was told by my doctor not to use BP or Retenoids 24 hours before and after the IPL treatment but I keep reading that it isn't 24 hours but two weeks that I shouldn't use these products. Who do I trust? Please help I don't want to further ruin my skin and I'm sure some knowledgeable people here know. I'm pretty sure the IPL is being used on the lightest setting possible and that is why I'm doing one week intervals between treatments instead of two or three.

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Well, I'll briefly describe my situation. I'm half arabic, half dutch so have an olive type skin tone. I've had cystic acne since I was 16. It wasn't too severe but I'd get a couple painful monsters monthly along with you regular white/black heads. Three months ago I was prescribed Triaz, Ziana and Doxycycline in order to cure the cysts for good. Well it has worked to an extent but I still have a good amount of flesh colored bumps on my forehead along with your 4-5 inflamed spots at times on both my forehead and checks. This doesn't bother me too much and I'm sticking to the regimen hoping to clear up the more stubborn acne. What has been bothering me are all the red marks, hyperpigmentated spots and acne scaring that had been left behind. I went to cosmetic place today and had the IPL Profacial done. It didn't hurt and I was left with absolutely no redness. I just have some questions that I'm hoping the kind people on this board can answer.

A.) I'm scheduled to have my second IPL next week. I've read that they are usually spread across three week intervals. Why am I allowed to get my next one so soon?

I've had IPL done by a Dr and this doesn't sound right to me. He insisted I wait 4-6 weeks between IPL sessions because your skin will continue to respond to the treatment in that time period. He wanted to assess my skin then and adjust my 2nd IPL treatment accordingly. Who is doing your IPL? Is it someone with medical training?

B.) I'm not allowed to use my BP wash and Ziana 24 hours before and after the IPL, I'm scared I'm going to break out. Can I still take my Doxycycline?

I don't see why you couldn't take it.

C.) Is it a bad idea to do the IPL treatments while I still have active acne?

In my experience, it's not the best timing. I was in your position. I was on the verge of clearing my acne but was still experiencing breakouts. I was desperate to get rid of the red marks so I booked myself some IPL. The IPL worked fantastically for the redness and even kept my acne away for a month or so. But I wish I had waited for my acne to clear properly as I ruined all the good results from the IPL by breaking out a few times after my last session.

D.) Has anyone here had success evening out skin tone with the IPL on these boards?

Yes, I have! Please see my post here:

http://www.acne.org/messageboard/IPL-red-m...html&hl=ipl

I would like to get IPL done again in the next 6 months or so. I find it really great in evening out my skin tone and taking away the post inflammatory hyperpigmentation associated with acne.

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Thank you so much for the response stargazer! Well, the person doing my IPL is a cosmetic surgeon. I truly believe since my red marks/PIH are so superficial that he's doing the IPL on the lowest possible setting. Maybe I'm wasting money but that really isn't an issue. BTW, my current acne are flesh colored bumps, no more cysts or only a couple pustules.

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Update: I'm going to be going in for my 3rd treatment this Thursday and boy am I excited. I got lucky and it turns out I only have to pay a $200 deductible and I will have access to unlimited IPL treatments! Anyway, after my first treatment I didn't see much of a result. It was performed on 13 joules (out of the possible 30). For the next treatment, I asked her to really focus in on the red marks and to amp it up to 15 joules. I saw much better results this time around. For my next treatment I might opt for 17 joules although I did notice the pain of the laser increased slightly from 13 to 15. Oh well, no pain no gain I guess. IMO this IPL is speeding up the fading process by three fold. As of right now, I would definitely recommend this treatment and this is only after 2 weeks.

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Update: Aright, its been just about a day after my third treatment. It would seem like in the first 24 hours after the treatment everything gets a bit darker but then starts to fade. I had it done on 17 joules this time around and it didn't seem to hurt anymore than it did before. It still feels like someone is gently snapping a rubber band on your face haha. I think it's important to note that my red marks are generally fresh. Nothing that is being treated is more than 2-3 months old. I'm hoping by mid week I'll start to see the most drastic results but my expectations are still in check. Also, I am still breaking out with mild acne on my cheeks and for heads. I'll have five active but small spots at any given time. It still looks a whole lot better than when I was using Ziana and Triaz so overall I'm still very pleased with the results thus far.

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Update: It's been two days since my fourth treatment. I upped it once again, and will leave it at 19 joules for the rest of my treatments. Let's see, I'm pretty sure my face would look the best it has in a while if I didn't pick this one spot on my forehead numerous times :naughty:. Ugh, I was so close and now I feel like I set myself back some. Since the joules were upped it would seem that my PIH spots are standing out slightly more this time around. At this point, my forehead just looks dirty. On the other hand, my cheeks look the best have in a long while. I'm expecting the PIH on my forehead to start to dissipate more daily and expect to have a really even toned complexion by Wednesday right before my fifth treatment. Here's to hoping and waiting. :dance:.

P.S - On Monday I might introduce Hydroquinone 4% as spot treatment to really speed up the process. I'm undecided at this point.

P.S.S - My inflamed acne is all but gone. I just have some blackheads and milia left over. IMO, the combination of the IPL, Doxycycline, my vitamin routine and diet have really helped to clear up my face. If it wasn't for these red marks/ PIH I'd look like I have the most mild case of acne.

Edited by SameSongAndDance

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I legit do not have a camera nor do I feel like getting one for this specific purpose. You can either believe me or not. I mean seriously, when I say my fresh red marks have improved by 50-70%, I'm not tripping acid, I'm not lying, I'm not delusional, I'm telling you what I'm seeing.

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Uh, pictures are COMPLETELY useless. Then you have to take into account the lighting (A MASSIVE FACTOR), and the general resolution of the pics, etc.

Descriptive wording is much better, and the most valuable is the person's account of whether the treatment is working or not.

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Update: Hoping for my red marks/ PIH to completely disappear within a month was obviously to me now, an unachievable goal. My last IPL, which was upped to 19 joules wasn't ineffective, but didn't provide me with the results I got from the first two treatments. I am going to continue with the treatments since it is of no cost to me/ For someone with very old red marks/PIH, I would think twice about this treatment, solely due to the cost. End result, my marks have been reduced by at least 50%, some of them have dissipated by as much as 70% in a month. Some things to keep in mind if you are deciding upon this treatment.

- It will probably work better if you aren't using any topical medications. The less irritation the better. Plus, the laser does work in killing bacteria, similar to BP.

- If you are at all tan, do not do this treatment. I don't mean naturally dark, I mean tan, I.E, sun exposure. Even if you have an olive complexion, the more pale you are the better it will work.

- For optimal and quicker results, your marks should not be more than a couple months old. I get my treatments weekly on a relatively low setting and it works wonders. If you have older red marks/ PIH, you'd probably be in store for treatments with 3 week intervals and a higher setting (It'd be painful also).

- If cost in not a factor, this treatment is DEFINITELY worth the try.

I am going for a micro-dermabrasion this Monday and then my next IPL the following Thursday. Following this week, I am going to be introducing Hydroquinnone 4% into my regimen. I am expecting to have relatively and perceptively spotless skin by my birthday (Feb. 9th). Yay?

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B.) I'm not allowed to use my BP wash and Ziana 24 hours before and after the IPL, I'm scared I'm going to break out. Can I still take my Doxycycline?

I don't see why you couldn't take it.

Doxy can cause light sunsitivity so that's why you shouldn't take it for a few day before your IPL treatments. Some people won't have a problem, but you are risking a greater chance of blistering from the IPL especially when the power is turned up.

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i just had another ipl done today. i love it! its really the only thing that has worked for me in terms of my red marks. it also has helped get rid of some active acne on my face as well. i am on doxy and use benzaclin everyday and have had no issues with the ipl at all. i dont know what the setting is but the lady that does it said she turned it up last time so she used the same setting again today. i need to ask her about that when i go back on march 3rd.

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i just had another ipl done today. i love it! its really the only thing that has worked for me in terms of my red marks. it also has helped get rid of some active acne on my face as well. i am on doxy and use benzaclin everyday and have had no issues with the ipl at all. i dont know what the setting is but the lady that does it said she turned it up last time so she used the same setting again today. i need to ask her about that when i go back on march 3rd.

Hi Karen,

I'm dealing with a seriously large cyst (about dime sized) on my cheek. I've had it drained, injected, you name it. I took doxy and have been switched today to Cephalexin. My question is, would IPL be an option to have on an active cyst? You seem to know a lot about IPL - thought I would ask? Thanks in advance!

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