PEARL LASER INFORMATION
What is the Pearl Procedure?
The Pearl procedure combines the impact of resurfacing lasers with the gentleness and safety of non-invasive procedures to treat aging and sun-damaged skin. Pearl reduces wrinkles, uneven texture and solar damage with fewer treatments and less overall recovery than other technologies to provide a healthy, pearl-like glow.
How does the Pearl treatment work?
During the procedure, the top layer of skin is treated with pulses of light in a pre-selected pattern. The laser
simultaneously sends heat to the deeper layers of skin to provide longer-term benefits. A natural protective dressing forms on the skin to minimize downtime during the restorative process. On day 3 or 4, this natural dressing will start to peel or slough off, revealing new, healthy, vibrant skin underneath.
In a short time, patients will notice overall skin clarity, smoothness and softness -all from a 30-45 minute treatment with only 5-7 days of ‘social’ downtime.
What is “social” downtime?
Downtime is the time spent recovering from a procedure. With “social” downtime, you can continue your normal daily activities. However, you may not wish to attend important social events because your face will appear pink/red for 3 – 4 days.
How does a Pearl treatment feel?
The Pearl treatment feels like a series of brief pinches. On a scale of 1-10, with 10 representing pain, most patients report the treatment feeling like a 2 or 3. Immediately after the procedure is finished, the treated area feels like it has been sunburnt.
When will I see results? How soon can I wear make-up after a Pearl treatment?
Results can be noticeable by day 5 -7 when the superficial tissue has peeled off, revealing fresh, bright, healthy skin underneath. Make-up may be applied at this time. It is not uncommon to experience some redness after your skin has peeled, this generally resolves in about 2-4 weeks. Pearl laser performed in areas of the body other than the face may take longer to heal, for example, chest , neck, arms and hands may take up to 14 days to complete the recovery process.
Are there any restrictions on my activity after a Pearl treatment?
After treatment, the skin will look and feel sunburned. You will apply ointment on the skin for 5-7 days as according to your aftercare instructions. Since you cannot wear sunscreen during this time, you will need to wear protective clothing and limit sun exposure for the duration of your healing period.
How many treatments are recommended?
Some patients may require two treatments spaced approximately one month apart to achieve the desired results. Other patients may need only one treatment.
Can Pearl be part of a combination therapy treatment?
Yes, patients may choose to have a Pearl treatment combined with other Cutera procedures such as Laser Genesis,Titan, limelight and even the NdYag CoolGlide, as well as fillers or Botox®. Discuss combination therapies with your practitioner.
How does Pearl compare to other laser treatments?
Pearl offers the most effective treatment to address fine lines, uneven texture and discoloration without wound care and the lengthy downtime required with certain Erbium and CO2 laser procedures. Compared to today’s fractionated technologies, Pearl offers noticeable results in just one treatment versus 4– 6 fractionated treatments.
Who is a candidate for a Pearl treatment?
Patients with light to medium skin tones and mild to moderate sun damage are the ideal candidates. Pearl is also used to treat acne scarring, large pores and dull/uneven skin tone. It is usually described by patients as a good “freshen up”.
POSSIBLE RISKS OF PEARL LASER
DISCOMFORT – Some discomfort may be experienced during treatment. A topical anesthetic will be applied to your skin before treatment. Your skin may feel like it has been sunburnt for a few hours after the treatment.
REDNESS/SWELLING – Redness (erythema) and/or swelling (edema) of the treated area is common and may occur. This usually resolves in a few days but can last up to one week.
SKIN DARKENING and PEELING – once skin has been lasered, it will progressively appear darker and begin to peel. This process generally can take anything from 5 days up to 10 days depending on the depth/intensity of the treatment. It is important that you follow your aftercare instructions to minimize the discomfort associated with lasered skin such as dryness, cracking and irritation/dermatitis. Proper aftercare will also ensure recovery times are kept to a minimum. Individual recovery times vary depending on health of skin and your lifestyle.
PIGMENT CHANGES (Skin Color) – During the healing process, there is a possibility that the treated area can become either lighter (hypopigmentation) or darker (hyperpigmentation) in color compared to the surrounding skin. This is usually temporary, but, on a rare occasion, it may be permanent. You should avoid sun exposure for at least 3 months after the treatment and use sunblock where appropriate
WOUNDS – Treatment can result in burning, blistering, or bleeding of the treated areas. It is important that you not pick or scratch the sites as this may lead to permanent scars or promote an infection. If any of these occur, please call our office.
INFECTION – Infection is a possibility whenever the skin surface is disrupted, though proper wound care and keeping the treated area clean should prevent this. Herpes simplex (cold sores) is seen in a small percentage of patients, even if prophylaxis (anti-viral medication) is used. This may lead to scarring. If signs of infection develop, such as pain, heat or an increase in redness, please call our clinic. Congestion/acne has been reported when using vasoline as an emollient in pearl aftercare
SCARRING – Scarring is a rare occurrence, but it is a possibility if the skin surface is disrupted. To minimize the risk of scarring, it is IMPORTANT that you follow all post-treatment instructions carefully.
EYE EXPOSURE – Protective eyewear (shields) will be provided. It is important to keep these shields on at all times during the treatment in order to protect your eyes from injury.
ALLERGY – There is a risk of an allergic reaction to the numbing cream and/or any other product that comes in contact with your skin.
IRRITATION – It is important that you follow the aftercare instructions given to you to minimize risk of irritation and discomfort. Lasered skin has increased sensitivity to environmental factors. Avoid smoking during recovery as this will impede healing and increase risk of infection. Avoid exposure to any potential irritants and pathogens eg. fertilizer, chemicals , dyes, cleaning products, dusty areas, gardening , swimming in chlorinated pools/spas, saunas