Why no reaction on my patch test?

I’m a 32 year old woman with PCOS (hence fairly hairy but on metformin and Dianette to provide anti-androgen treatment). I wanted my extended bikini area, navel line and underarms treated by laser.

I went to a Boots Laser Bodycare centre for my test and free consultation on Saturday. They use a Lightsheer diode laser apparently. After going through all of the preamble and medical history, she got me up on the bench and started the test itself. Although I braced for pain, I didn’t feel anything at all. She said this was normal as she had to test me at the lowest setting. She continued testing me to see which level I needed but even at the highest strength setting nothing was happening and the pain was only very slight. She did a small area with the highest setting but she said that she wasn’t seeing the reaction she needed and that the skin wasn’t even red, let alone nettle rashed and raised, as was normal.

She doesn’t think I’m a suitable candidate for LHR, even though I’m dark haired and very pale skinned, but has offered to do a whole side for me at no charge in a couple of weeks as a larger patch test. She said that even people who seem to be ideal candidates (like me) sometimes just don’t get the correct treatment from the laser and that they don’t know why this is.

Can LHR ever work if there is no reaction by the skin to the laser. Some of the hairs look a bit like blackheads but I don’t know if this is because they are ‘treated’ or because they are ingrowing after being shaved?

Does anyone have any advice or information on whether another type of laser might work for someone who showed no reaction to the Lightsheer diode laser (thank you Yvonne - I didn’t know what sort it was :wink:

Edited - I now think that the ‘blackheads’ are tombstones so perhaps it might have worked. Any thoughts from anyone else who knows about follicles NOT swelling when treated?

[ July 01, 2004, 10:27 AM: Message edited by: PCOS Girl ]

As your tech pointed out, some people do not respond to treatment, and the reasons are not understood at this time.

Because of your condition, it is wise to take a multiple approach.

As far as reaction, hairs amy take a few days to fall out. When people do a test spot for reaction, they are checking to see if the skin has a bad reaction (scarring, discoloration) more than if the treatment is effective. The reason for a test patch is more to make sure you won’t walk around for many omths with discolored skin, especially on your face or other exposed skin. A test patch also lets them determine the paramenters for treating you.