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V-beam upcoming on Thursday: Will it work if I'm not flushed?

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  • V-beam upcoming on Thursday: Will it work if I'm not flushed?

    Hello everyone,

    My History
    I'm male, white, 38. I have Eastern European Jewish ancestry, and my skin is very pale. Over the past year, I've developed rosacea. I do not have a family history of it, other than that my father has a reddish nose. But no one else in my family has any other symptoms of rosacea at all.
    Over the past year, the flushing has become more and more persistent, to the point that, I now wake up every morning with deep red flushing on my right cheek. It burns and is very painful. What is strange to me is that, only my right cheek flushes, not the left at all. Is this very unusual for rosacea to only affect one cheek?

    My Question
    I am scheduled to have a V-Beam on Thursday. I have had V-Beam treatments in the past for a scar, and I know the V-Beam works.
    My question is, I've been warned by a dermatologist that V-Beam will not be effective if I am not flushing (red) when I have the laser treatment. The explanation I received was that, if my skin is not red and flushed, this means the blood cells are not prominently at the surface where the laser can treat them. The V-beam is a very superficial laser, so it can only treat very superficial veins. If I am not flushed and red, the blood vessels will not be as prominent and close to the skin surface, which would make the V-beam treatment almost worthless. I'm very worried about this. I usually wake up with a bright red right cheek, but often times the redness decreases after I wake up.

    My Thoughts on What to Do
    I have thought about, what can I do to make sure I'm as red and flushed as possible when I go to the dermatologist's office? I know my two triggers are 1. heat, and 2. cold wind. I have thought of turning up the heat in my room to 80 degrees the night before, so I get a huge flush in the morning. Then, on the drive to the dermatologist (45 minutes), I can put on two coats, a hat, scarf, and turn up the heat in my car. I know all this may sound crazy, but I believe the physiology of the explanation makes a whole lot of sense. Has anyone else had to do so similar things to provoke a flush before their V-Beam treatment?

    My heart
    I am very anxious about this issue of making sure the V-Beam is effective. I have really been suffering emotionally from the worsening rosacea. Each morning, I dread waking up and getting out of bed, knowing that when I look in the mirror, I will have a large red blotch on my face. I am so tired of it, and want some relief finally. Yesterday, I broke down crying. I just want this v-beam treatment to go as well as possible.

    I would be very grateful for any comments, suggestions, or advice.

    Thank you

  • #2
    'Will it work if I'm not flushed?' Good question. I would like to know the answer to this too. I have my first V Beam appointment fairly soon and although I flush on and off throughout the day every day, my skin is thankfully not permanently 'flushed' yet. So I wonder what will happen if my skin is fairly calm on the day of the treatment?

    I have heard that some laser doctors recommend inducing a flush before IPL, but I've never heard it mentioned in regards to V Beam before. My understanding is that the V Beam laser penetrates deeper than IPL and that's why it's a better option for vascular flushing. At my initial V Beam consultation, no mention was made that my skin needed to be flushed for it to work, and my skin was actually pretty calm on the day.

    Thinking about it though, as much as I desperately want the treatment to be as effective as possible, I would be very wary of 'inducing' a flush the way you're thinking. Deep, burning flushes are the very thing that make this condition permanently worse - That seems to be the general consensus on how rosacea 'progresses' and it definitely aligns with my own experience. Inducing a big flush before your appointment might help make it more effective, but it could also at best, cause a big flare that takes weeks to heal, or at worst, make your condition worse in the long run. Just my opinion! Personally I will be doing everything to avoid flushes, even on appointment day.

    Sorry to hear you're struggling emotionally with all this. Have you tried any anti-flushing meds? They take the edge off for me.
    Good luck with your treatment, let us know how you get on.


    • #3
      to answer my own question...

      I found a published article on this very subject.

      "Hair Dryer Use to Optimize Pulsed Dye Laser Treatment in Rosacea Patients"
      Lana Kashlan, MD, Emmy M. Graber, MD, and Kenneth A. Arndt, MD
      J Clin Aesthet Dermatol v.5(6); Jun 2012


      Rosacea is a common chronic inflammatory condition characterized by erythema, telangiectasias, papules, and pustules. While there are many effective treatment options for the papulopustular type, laser therapy remains the most effective modality to treat erythematotelangiectatic rosacea. Erythema and flushing associated with rosacea remains an uncomfortable and socially embarrassing problem for patients. Unfortunately, patients often do not have significant erythema or flushing when they present for laser treatment. With this in mind, we propose a novel technique aimed at enhancing the response of rosacea patients being treated for erythema with pulsed dye laser. Specifically, we present a split-face example of our clinical observation that pre-treatment with forced heated air prior to pulsed-dye laser leads to a greater response in rosacea patients with erythema and flushing.


      • #4
        Very cool article, paperbag. I go in for my second V-beam next Thursday.

        My doctor did advise for me to be flushed prior to my first V-beam, so I went to the gym beforehand and worked out as hard as I could.

        Might see if I can try the hair dryer next week.

        edit: My skin actually looks extremely similar to that of the patient in the article, except a bit more severe.
        Senior Member
        Last edited by Josef61; 10 April 2014, 05:15 AM.


        • #5
          I think I'm just going to skip my beta blockers on the day. The idea of purposely bringing on a big flush just doesn't sit well with me, knowing how long my skin takes to recover from bad flushing episodes. The most terrifyingly severe flare up I ever had was caused by the heat from the hair dryer at the hairdressers. My Dad was shocked and wanted to take me to A&E. I won't be repeating it


          • #6
            How did it go paperbag? Getting nervous for my first Vbeam in a few days...