Burn marks after laser session

My mum and I have been recently getting laser hair removal done every 4-6 weeks. We are both on our 6th or so session. Both of us have responded well and nothing bad has happened.

However, yesterday my mum went for her session and she came back with a lot of redness. She gets her neck, chin, cheeks and upper lip done and everything was very noticeably red. This has never happened before. There might be a little bit of redness/itchiness/soreness afterwards, but not to this extent. After a while, the redness increased and my mum was in tears because it was burning her a lot and it was really painful. She applied an ice pack as per the practitioner’s instructions and the burning went away eventually.

But after a few hours, the redness went away and now there are little circles all over the areas where she got lasered, presumably where the laser touched her skin. They were there last night and are still present this morning. They are reddish brown. My mum says that there is slight burning and that her skin feels ‘stretched’.

As it is the weekend, we haven’t been able to contact the clinic but plan to do so first thing tomorrow morning.

But in the meantime, I have a few questions if anyone is able to answer:

  • Are these burns or blood clots?
  • Will they disappear? In how long?
  • Is it normal to get these marks?
  • Why would the marks happen now and not in any of her earlier treatments? Is it that this time’s laser might have been set to a higher intensity?
  • Will they leave scarring?

Please help!

Just a thought: perhaps the technician forgot to turn on the coolant apparatus of the laser thus, your mum got burned.

This is not clotting, by the way. Do you have any aloe vera available? Putting it on cold out of the refrigerator is very soothing.

The tightness of the skin is due to the swelling that is stretching the skin.

It may take some time for the circle marks to disappear, but most likely, they will fade. I can’t say anything specific because I can’t see your mum’s burns.

Work on bringing the heat out of the skin. If they say ice, then follow their instructions. Cold, pure aloe is like liquid ice and it does soothe as well. I would use it liberally unless your laser specialist has told you NOT to use it all for some reason.

Regards to your mum and keep us updated on how this resolves over time if you would. This is always helpful to a lot of people you will never meet.

Thank you so much for your response, dfahey!

My mum went to the doctor this morning and he said everything will be fine. The machine was playing up on the day that she got it done. The marks are blood clots, not burns. She had another laser treatment done to help and has now been given instructions to stay out of the sun and harsh light. He said that there will be no lasting scars and everything will be completely fine within a few weeks.

I use aloe vera a lot after threading and waxing and I suggested it to my mum and she loves it and has been liberally applying it and she finds it does help.

This issue has now been resolved and I thought I should post a follow up post (like dfahey suggested) just in case anyone in the future finds this post and is wondering what the outcome is - finding a problem similar to mine but not knowing the outcome has happened to me so many times and I would hate for it to happen to someone else!

In any case, it goes without saying that you should ALWAYS be very careful about the clinic you attend and the practitioner!

I have heard of blood clotting with laser therapy for sclerotherapy or varicose veins, but not laser hair reduction. This must be rare side effect for laser hair reduction. Do you know the name of the laser? What caused the burning, prolonged redness and little circles if she wasn’t burned?Thanks for the feedback and I am glad your mum is doing better.