I find it’s frequently the case that as people age they tend to focus on their face and neglect an area that can easily reflect signs of aging and maturity… their hands. Our hands are in constant view as we communicate and express ourselves. Over the years, hands begin to develop age spots, loose volume, and veins become more prominent. Restoring youthful hands is all about improving texture and replacing lost volume. Thick skin, pigmentation patches, brown and red spots, unsightly veins and tendons, a “bony” appearance and fine lines – all become prominent in aging hands and can occur even in our forties. Much like our faces, our hands show signs of aging from unavoidable sun exposure, loss of fat, collagen, elasticity and heredity. Texture is the first age-related change with spots following close behind. Sun exposure contributes to the pigment changes in our skin. I understand how important the appearance of our hands are and recommend a combination treatment that includes dermal fillers to restore volume and IPL or CO2 Erbium Yag laser treatments to correct pigmentation and texture problems. At Sistine Plastic Surgery we offer IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) treatment with our Palomar Starlux 500, CO2 treatments with our Cortex Co2 Erbium Yag Laser and Filler treatments using Restylane®, Perlane®, Juvederm®, Belotero® or Radiesse® to reduce age and sun spots and add volume to thinning, wrinkled hands.
In the information below I’d like to provide some answers to frequently asked questions about hand rejuvenation. If you would like to schedule a consultation to talk about this procedure, please contact Sistine Plastic Surgery.
Intense Pulsed Light for Skin Pigmentation
Palomar Laser IPL Treatment for Age Spots. The Palomar high-powered StarLux 500 is a powerful, yet comfortable, laser and pulsed light system. The Palomar StarLux Intense Pulsed Light is able to effectively treat problems related to older skin – brown spots and age spots that appear on sun-exposed areas of the body. The intense pulsed light treatments rejuvenate the skin of the hands, providing a perfect complement to the increased volume from the dermal fillers.
What is intense pulsed light treatment and how does it work?
During IPL treatment, spectrums of light penetrate the skin and tissue and target the areas of darker pigment in the skin. The age spots become somewhat darker for several days and then become much lighter in the week or so to follow.
Is IPL treatment painful?
Numbing cream will be applied before every treatment to increase comfort. Many patients describe the pulse sensations as a “snap of a rubber band.” Every effort will be made to ensure you are comfortable and pain is minimal.
What will I observe after the IPL treatment?
It is common to be a little red and/or swollen after treatment. Staying out of the sun and using sunscreen is recommended during treatment. Patients will notice brown spots darkening and eventually flaking off approximately a week or two after hand rejuvenation treatment. This is a part of the cell turnover and skin renewal process and indicates that the treatment is working.
Do I only need one IPL treatment?
This depends on the size and color of the lesions and the patients skin type. Most patients benefit from having 3 hand rejuvenation procedures one month apart. Occasional some patients will require additional maintenance treatments, especially those frequently outdoors without proper sunscreen coverage.
Cortex Co2 Erbium Yag Laser Treatment for Skin Pigmentation
The Cortex CO2 Erbium Yag Laser is a resurfacing laser that works by eradicating old, damaged skin spots and pigmentation and encouraging the development of new skin. In particular, the Cortex laser is ideal for addressing fine lines and wrinkles on the hands (as it does on other areas of the body).
Is Co2 Erbium Yag Laser treatment painful?
Numbing cream can be applied to the hands prior to treatment to maximize comfort. I use a very effective numbing cream and make sure that the cream is on for an adequate amount of time to take full effect. With this approach I find my patients find IPL and laser treatments very tolerable.
Do I only need one treatment with the Co2 Erbium Yag Laser?
Patients only need to have one treatment with the Cortex Co2 Erbium Yag Laser. This treatment typically results in a substantial rejuvenation of the skin. Certainly, some patients ask about having another treatment after their recovery. This can be done, but we request that patient wait for around a year before doing that. Like many cosmetic procedures, how long the results last depends on how well you take care of your skin. Sun avoidance and a well-designed skin care regimen are critical.
How do I know if I will need both IPL or the Erbium Yag Laser and Filler treatments?
I will determine if both treatments will be necessary during your consultation and whether you would benefit more from the Erbium Yag Laser or Intense Pulsed Light. Combing both IPL or the Erbium Yag Laser and Filler treatments can generate outstanding results and take years off your hands.
Dermal Fillers for Hand Rejuvenation
Dermal Fillers like Restylane®, Juvederm®, Belotero® and Perlane® are composed of hyaluronic acid and work to encourage collagen growth, reduce wrinkles and lines and plump up skin. Results can be seen immediately and typically last anywhere from 5-6 months. Radiesse® is made up of Calcium hydroxylapatite (CaHa) and works in a similar fashion.
Are Filler injections painful?
I perform all injections in our Pittsburgh, Sewickley, Wexford and Greensburg office and will ensure that your procedure is quick and that pain is minimal. Treatment only takes approximately 15-45 minutes, but lasts for months.
Can I return back to work immediately after treatment?
Your hands might be slightly red and swollen after treatment, but this typically resolves within a day or two. Applying ice packs helps to reduce swelling and inflammation. Avoid UV lamps and the sun, which can worsen symptoms. You can return back to work immediately after treatment and resume normal activities.