We treat facial vessels with two types of vascular lasers. The VBeam is an updated version of the pulsed dye laser (PDL). It has a range of settings that can be altered to treat red linear blood vessels, broken capillaries, spider and cherry angiomas, port wine stain birthmarks, as well as more diffuse redness and ruddiness of the face. It can also improve the enlarged blood vessels and flushing associated with rosacea. After VBeam treatment, patients often experience redness and swelling, which rarely last more than 24-48 hours and can be controlled with ice packs. Bruising is less common, but can occur focally, may last 3-7 days, and can be covered with makeup. Bruising may in some cases actually yield improved results, although we try to accommodate patient's requests to avoid bruising whenever possible.
We also use the Iridex Diolite 532 laser system. This is a solid-state diode laser which is effective for treating fine linear blood vessels, especially around the nose and cheeks, and red spider and cherry angiomas. It is not used to eliminate background ruddiness or redness. After Diolite treatment patients have mild redness and swelling, which subsides within hours, especially with ice pack application. Neither bruising nor discoloration is likely to occur with this laser.
There are a number of laser manufacturers who claim their lasers can treat small leg veins. There have been some promising results with 1064 nm Nd:YAG lasers for the bluish small veins in conjunction with other procedures such as ambulatory phlebectomy, endovenous laser procedures, vein ligation, sclerotherapy, as well as intense pulsed light. Lasers are an adjunct for leg vein treatment, and may work best for fine mats or vessels that are superficial and too small to penetrate with a sclerotherapy needle. At this time, we feel that most patients actually get better results from sclerotherapy.