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Thread: First V-Beam

  1. #1
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    Default First V-Beam

    Had my first v-beam today to see if it can help my flushing. The derm had every kind of laser, Aura KTP, Lyra 1064 YAG, v-beam and IPL. The v-beam was his first choice for treating flushing and the chances of it helping he estimated to be about 30%.

    I'm taking photos but they proably won't be much use because when i'm not flushing my skin is normal looking with just a few broken capillaries. I'm just hoping to reduced the frequency and intensity of my flushing. Aparently results are slow and take about a month.

    It's 1 and a half hours since it feels okay but gets very red and sore if i stop applying ice packs. Thanks to Twickle Purples post i took my own ice pack for the drive home. I'm so glad i did, i got given the same tiny throw away icepacks which melted in 5 minutes.

    It was a Candela V Beam 595nm with a 12mm spot size. I had very low settings, I think either 6 or 6.5. The derm wanted to do as low as possible to see how my skin reacts, which is what i wanted too. They also wait 3 months to see how the skin reacts before going ahead with any more treatments.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Twickle Purple's Avatar
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    I hope this works for you! It sounds like you have a cautious, and prudent, Derm. I've got questions, sorry if it's too much, you probably want to just relax for a bit now.

    When you're ready:
    What did the treatment feel like?
    Did you apply a topical freezing cream for a short period before your appointment?
    Do they put a gel on your face before treatment?
    Did they put anything on after treatment? (Mine tried to apply cortisone cream!)
    Did your Derm or a tech do the application?
    Did your Derm say why the V-Beam for flushing?
    And, did he mean the success rate is 30% or the improvement you'll expect is 30%?
    Am I asking too many questions, yet? But, just one more...
    Could you post a progress over the next few days?

    Big hug and cooling vibes!
    Twickle Purple

    Happiness is a choice.

  3. #3
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    Hi Twickle

    I hope it works too. Big healing vibes to you too, how's your face feeling?

    I will keep updating, i find your treatments posts really useful. This is redder and more painful than i expected, but after seeing your pictures i'm not worried. I am going to try very hard to sleep on as many pillows as possible tonight, i have a big meeting tomorrow, would be interesting to turn up all swelled up! They didn't expect much downtime with my treatment, due to the low settings, but you never know!

    Now that it's been a couple of hours it's feeling, and looking, much better so now that i can stop holding cold washcloth on my cheeks i can type again!

    He recommended the v-beam as he said it was the safest laser, as was the most specific to blood vessels, and also that it was known to be most effective and well studied. He also works at the big childrens hospital and it's what they use on vascular birthmarks on babies, so is quite gentle on the skin. And that the new versions like he has have none of the side effects that the older pulsed die and v-beams have. He doesn't think i have rosacea that it is just crazy flushing, which he said sometimes just happens. He did say though that if it wasn't controlled it would most likely turn into Rosacea quite quickly.

    30% is the chance of it helping my flushing, he was very honest and said that since the cause of my flushing was unknown there was a chance that it wouldn't make much of a difference. He seemed to think it would either help or it wouldn't. He went through every possible other way to try and reduce flushing and made sure i had tried every other possiblity before he would agree to laser treatment. He also said there was a chance that my body would normalise on it's own, which would be nice.

    On the postive side if my flushing does become rosacea than he said that has a much much higher success rate. So i guess even if my flushing never gets better i may be able to stop it turning into constant redness, broken capalliery and P&P.

    Interestingly he told me he has had patients who react badly to laser or IPL with constant flushing and burning pain. He said it was very very rare but wanted me to be aware that it is a possiblity. He said that this was another reason he liked to try the v-beam first, as he felt it was the least risky in this respect. He also treats the bad reaction, he actually had a name for it, with tricyclic antidepresseants, which i am actually already on for atypical facial pain.

    The laser technition did the treatment. She came in at the end of the consultation and he wrote down all the settings for her. I don't think he actually ever does the actual treatments. Which proably explains why he had the time to spend over 30 minutes with me.

    If V-beam doesn't work, and as long as my flushing didn't worsen and Iwanted to try again, he said he would try V-beam a second time, and if still no result, the KTP then Lyra and then lastly IPL. Amazing considering that he is a very well known laser specilist in Australia his prices were great. I didn't even ask because i thought that whatever the cost i liked his conservative approach but it was only $200. Other places i had called had quoted upwards of $600.

    From my research i though YAG might be the go for me. Interestingly he said that YAG 1064 could only cover large areas in the mode which was used for wrinkles, so is very unspecific to blood vessels. He said it can sometimes work for flushing but not enough is known about how it works, the most likely theory being that heating the skin does something good.

    Pain wise it felt about the same as IPL, a bit worse but bearable. I did ask her to to talk about anything by the time she got to my nose because i really needed some distracting for that last bit. It seems to get worse as it goes on. She did a very tight pattern. No numbing creams which is okay as i am wary of putting anything much on my skin. Nothing on the skin afterwards, just told to avoid the sun, treat my skin gently and use cetaphil moisturiser. Then i was given a hand out with more details on aftercare treatment covering stuff like what to do if blistering occurs.

    Phew! i think that's the lot!

    Though I guess for anyone else in Melbourne who might want to know The derms name was Dr Bekhor and i would very much recommend him. Not only for laser or IPL but also any general derm stuff.

    Time to get back to my icepacks....

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    Default Ow!

    This is much more painful than IPL afterwards.

    I am so glad I had lowest settings. 8 hours after my face really hurts, it's fine if i keep cool cloths or ice on it but after ten minutes or so without them it really hurts and stings.

    I am hoping that when i wake up tomorrow it feels better but am now wondering if i will look worse tomorrow! I am so glad i have a chillow!

  5. #5
    Senior Member Twickle Purple's Avatar
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    Hi Froggirl,

    I hope you were presentable for your meeting today and the discomfort has subsided. You have a very good doctor. He's focused on the patient and not the product -- that is more unusual than it should be with Derms who have expensive equipment.

    Pronounced and prolonged flushing was what caused my Rosacea. So you are very smart to pay attention to this now. Sure, you may have better success with treatment later, but would you really want to get to that point?

    Nothing I used worked when the flushing first started, then I went to see my Acupuncturist (Dr. Aung, Edmonton AB) and he applied 'cups' to my upper chest and back. These really hurt! I became covered in huge hickies but my flushing disappeared within minutes and didn't recur for months. Dr. Aung was exceptional and I have found no one like him where I live now. This experience made me aware of my lymph system. I've been told that I am flushed and swollen because of a build up of toxins in my system. I do know that when I eat certain foods I will have pustules come out on my nose almost instantly, by the time the meal is over I look in the mirror and clear them out. Gross? Yup. But there it is.

    The Doxepin worked for the environmental triggers for a while. Once the Rosacea became entrenched it lost effectiveness. It may again be useful for me in the future.

    Where I'm going with this is, I think the RLT will be more beneficial in cases like ours, where flushing is the thing we are working to treat/combat. The other medications (oral and topical antibiotics) I took because I had developed a full Rosacea flare and now that that is on the mend I am focused on the one symptom that caused the other symptoms. On the ESFB I've been reading about ETS (Endoscopic Thoracic Sympathectomy) and the CS (Compensatory Sweating) side effect and I realize that the role of our facial tissue for heat release is not really understood.

    I think the flushing is caused by a whole body inflammation, which is brought on by different things for different people. For me it's environmental and food and being awake. All I know is that I really cannot avoid what is giving me the symptom so I'm going to try to get my body working so it can do its job better. This is where the RLT comes in. Don't know how -- don't know why. It's just a thought and a hope I have from what I've read.

    I have used the handheld units on my lymph areas over my collarbone area and lower legs mostly. My left leg is a problem for me. And, I find the swelling reduction is noticeable. Once I have the 660nm+880nm panels going I’ll focus on the lymph full time. For now I’m working with the 660nm on my face.

    Twickle Purple

    Happiness is a choice.

  6. #6
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    Froggirl

    Don't forget to try to sleep with your head up higher than your heart. this will reduce swelling. After treament I find that a fan is invaluable and so is my propanerol.

    Best wishes

    Sarah

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    1 day after:

    I gathered every pillow i could find and propped myself as high as i could..and amazingly i slept okay.

    My face is so much better, no swelling and only some redness on the very tops of my cheeks where i had some broken capillaries. It's tender but not bad at all. In fact much better than it usually looks in the morning. Waking up is an almost sure fire flush trigger for me.

    I am trying to get off beta blockers althogether, i take a tiny dose for heart palpations but it's not good for my Raynaurds. Proponol was good for some situations but didn't really make a big difference to my flushing.

    The blood vessels in my whole body seem to have gone crazy. Last night my knees flushed, which has happened before, but this time it was a hot burning painful flush and they were so swollen that they gave out when i stood up. When it went bruises started coming up! How weird is that! I assume it is Raynaurds but I am very very glad that my doctor has ruled out any other medical problems that could cause flushing or i would have been imagining all sorts of things.

    I've only had this crazy body part flushing since I tried clonadine. i'm been off it for three months now. The derm did say that at some point my body may just go back to normal. My facial flushing started before that as a side effect of Zoloft. Would be nice it things did normalise...not sure that it's likely though. Make me very cautious of meds though. Once my atypical facial pain is sorted out i am going to try no meds at all for a while.

    I am wondering if i should ask to see some kind of vascular specilistist. In Aust we have a medical saftey net where if you spend a certain amount all the rest of your medical costs are free for the rest of the year. I've just reached it so maybe should take advantage of it and find out all i can now!

    My red light array is going to arrive today which is a bit exciting. Can't wait to give it a go.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Twickle Purple's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Froggirl
    The blood vessels in my whole body seem to have gone crazy. Last night my knees flushed, which has happened before, but this time it was a hot burning painful flush and they were so swollen that they gave out when i stood up. When it went bruises started coming up! How weird is that! I assume it is Raynaurds but I am very very glad that my doctor has ruled out any other medical problems that could cause flushing or i would have been imagining all sorts of things.

    I've only had this crazy body part flushing since I tried clonadine. i'm been off it for three months now. The derm did say that at some point my body may just go back to normal. My facial flushing started before that as a side effect of Zoloft. Would be nice it things did normalise...not sure that it's likely though. Make me very cautious of meds though. Once my atypical facial pain is sorted out i am going to try no meds at all for a while.

    I am wondering if i should ask to see some kind of vascular specilistist. In Aust we have a medical saftey net where if you spend a certain amount all the rest of your medical costs are free for the rest of the year. I've just reached it so maybe should take advantage of it and find out all i can now!

    My red light array is going to arrive today which is a bit exciting. Can't wait to give it a go.
    I am so glad that you had a good night. You must have been relieved. This thing with your knees is alarming! Have they bruised before? I would ask to see a vascular specialist for sure, to be safe.

    Did your atypical facial pain come on after you started flushing? I have this as well. I've had trigeminal neuralgia since my early 20s but it was always very specific. Then about 5 years ago I began with the bilateral atypical neuralgia, it was diagnosed as a atypical trigeminal neuralgia and I had lots of testing, MRIs and such to rule out things like MS. Of course they told me I had MS but I do not believe that. Anyway, I think the pain is a result of the facial flushing causing a hypersensitivity in my nerves. Reading some expereiences here on the forum reinforced that thinking. I'm hoping with the reduction in flushing eventually this horrible symptom will go away as well. I am taking Neurontin for it presently.

    Sounds like Australia has a great health system. Go for it while you can! I hope things keep on improving now that the RLT is going to be part of your 'routine'.

    Twickle Purple

    Happiness is a choice.

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    The bruising is a bit alarming but i have been getting unexplained bruises all over for a while now. I get burst blood vessels in my eyes too so i assume the same thing is happening over my whole body. Like i said i am very very glad that i have been fully checked out or i would be a bit scared right now. I've made a doctors appointment for next week anyway though.

    The face pain did start after the flushing. At first i assumed it was just a part of rosacea, then i thought i was having allergic reactions to rosex and finacea. I get painful flushes but this really intense pain was only ever on the right side though and once a month would build to an awful unbearable pain which would last about four hours before going. Once it went though i always seemed to forget just how bad it had been. The pain was always worse around my eye and chin even though i never flush on my chin.

    It wasn't until it got so bad one day that i called my drs office in tears and he saw me on his day off and spent over an hour with me. He was stumped at first but got so excited when he read the entry on atypical facial pain in a text book because it fitted my symptoms perfectly. I started on 10mg of Tofanil but reacted very badly to it, i flushed for nearly 4 days straight from one tablet. There is a good chance that after 4 weeks of being on the pain will actually go so i had to go back on it but this time on 1/4 of a tablet. It takes two weeks to kick in but i think it is working, I have had some pain and buring sensations but they have been duller than ususal. Maybe it's also causing some of my crazy flushing. My facial flushing hasn't got much worse on this low dose but it is defeiently easier to trigger a flush. It is chemically an amine which is one of the chemical i can't tolerate in food (histamine is an amine).

    I really wonder how it came about and if Rosacea could trigger it. I think the pain started for me after IPL, but that could have been a coincidence. I also flush on that side more than my other side but again don't know if that was because the pain triggered flushing or if the flushing triggered pain. I have wondered about MS. I had read though that MS related nerve pain doesn't respond to meds used for atypical Facial pain or TN, it that why you are sure you don't have MS?

    Anyway it is 9:00am here so i better get dressed and get to work!

  10. #10
    Senior Member Twickle Purple's Avatar
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    My heart goes out to you, you sure have been through your share with all this!

    Nothing works for my TN or facial pain. I tried tegratol but had a bad reaction that kept me immobilized for a few days till my liver was done its thing metabolizing. I had to have some liver tests to make sure nothing was damaged. It was really weird. Then we tried the Neurontin, and even though it doesn't rid me of the pain, it changes how I perceive it. Frankly I feel too stoned to feel much of anything when I take it for an attack! I also take a low dose every night and I'm feeling that it reduces the atypical attacks. Nothing makes a dent in the original TN symptoms. They are so quick they leave me breathless. They come in clusters and I'll go for periods with out them.

    The reason I don't think I have MS is because I don't really feel like I have it! I have MRIs annually and go for motor testing which show a small decrease in function/reflex time of the right hand and arm, nothing more. I know people that have it bad and I'm nothing like them. I know the different kinds and all but I'm thinking I can work with what happens with my body. It is called the ultimate denial But seriously, some folks have some episodes and are fine going forward. I'm one of them.

    Have you been tested for Carcinoid Syndrome? Here's a link to a recent discussion on this at the ESFB forum. You mentioned that your doctor ruled out other medical causes for your blushing, but your broken vessels and bruising sound like something could be amiss (I hope I'm not alarming you). I have mild broken vessels (which turn into tiny bruises) but no where near what you are describing.

    Did santa bring the RLT today?

    Big hugs!
    Twickle Purple

    Happiness is a choice.

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