Hand Rejuvenation – Fact Sheet – IPL, RF, PRP, dermal fillers and combination treatments

Hands are prone to displaying the first signs of ageing; very often they age even faster than the face. The skin on the back of the hand is much thinner than that on your face. Also, since there is very little fat on the backs of the hands, even a minor break down of collagen or elastin fibers with ageing is very noticeable. Sun damage can lead to pigmentation, redness and sunspots. The resultant loss of volume creates crepe-like skin texture, more visible tendons, and bulging veins. But don’t throw up your hands just yet, there are a number of rejuvenation treatments that can restore some of the softness and suppleness of our youth. Make an appointment to see Dr Kathy Gallagher to discuss the options in more detail and develop a plan that suits your hands.

Dermal filler hand renewal treatments can safely counteract the ropey appearance of ageing hands. When used in conjunction with platelet rich plasma (PRP) treatments, where our own blood is used to revive collagen, skin texture is much enhanced. Intense pulsed light treatments or IPL rejuvenation is also very helpful when it comes to evening out pigmentation and managing age spots. Chemical peels may be used as well to improve the appearance of age spots, fine wrinkles, and uneven skin pigment. Additionally, radio frequency (RF) treatments not only stimulate collagen production for healthy looking skin but actually tighten skin in some cases. For more details click on IPL Skin Rejuvenation, RF Skin Rejuvenation and Technologies used at Shine to link to our other fact sheets.

Dermal Fillers

What is it?

Dermal fillers are injectables that work by drawing in water and holding it there as a means to plump up the skin in a particular target area. A filler draws water to the area bulking up the layers below the skin, thus softening and smoothing out skin making it look fuller. The filling effect of these injections is immediate, but eventually they are broken down by the body and must be re-injected at regular intervals to maintain their effect.

How does it work?

The filler used at our Shine clinic in Brisbane is made from a naturally occurring sugar that is a component of the skin (so no allergic reactions). It attracts many times it own weight in water which serves to plump the skin. An abundance of sugars like this contributes to the moisture and volume of young skin. As we age, the production of these sugars in the skin declines, resulting in a loss of skin hydration, volume and elasticity. The procedure is simple, takes very little time and requires minimal preparation. Fillers are injected directly under the skin with tiny needles that cause a small amount of discomfort. The skin is then massaged to spread the filler evenly.

What about side effects?

If you are pregnant or think you may be pregnant, it is not recommended that you have any kind of dermal fillers including for hand rejuvenation. The same is true for anyone who is breast feeding. If you have never had this type of procedure before and are prone to scarring it is best to avoid any kind of injectable treatment. Some bruising, redness and tenderness at the injection site may be experienced, but usually disappears after a few days. Any issues should always be followed up with our doctor, as there are simple corrective actions that can be undertaken.

Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) Rejuvenation

What is it?

A popular technique for improving damaged and ageing skin is Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) rejuvenation. A high intensity beam of light is generated by passing an electrical current through a chamber filled with (xenon) gas. Deeper elements in the skin absorb this specific light, causing them to heat up, while the outer skin surface is not disrupted.

Our Elos IPL rejuvenation is the first and only technology that combines light and radio frequency energies to effectively and gently restore and rejuvenate the appearance of the skin. Sometimes, practitioners will use IPL rejuvenation in conjunction with a chemical that acts to sensitise the skin to the effects of IPL. This is termed photodynamic photo-rejuvenation, and can improve results because it increases the absorption of light energy into the target tissue.

How does it work?

A device is used to pulse a photo-rejuvenation light that targets specific coloured elements in the skin and disrupts these cells. Heating the skin causes skin cells to release their pigment, which rises to and is shed from the skin surface. Inflammatory responses are also triggered aiding the removal of old or damaged collagen, and replacing it with a new healthy matrix. This leads to at least partial replacement of the skin volume lost with age. The same IPL rejuvenation device can simultaneously treat several kinds of skin problems. It can be used for pigmented areas (eg age spots, sun spots, or unsightly broken capillaries), as well as wrinkles, though the effects on wrinkles are somewhat less dramatic.

What about side effects?

Recovery is rapid after the procedure, and you may return to work soon after. Most IPL rejuvenation side effects are minor and subside within 24 hours. Temporary itching and redness may be experienced after treatment. There may also be some skin peeling for a few days.

Do not be alarmed if there is a slight darkening of the skin after IPL rejuvenation, and some small crusting. It will quickly settle after old skin cells are pushed to the surface and peel off. Applying a moisturiser twice a day speeds up the process. Those with a darker skin type may not be good candidates for IPL rejuvenation due to the risk of post inflammatory hyperpigmentation. A patch test is always required before the first treatment. Protect the treated area from the sun for at least two weeks to minimise any risk of pigment changes. Preferably use a broad-spectrum sunscreen, every day, regardless of weather. Also, if you have a susceptibility to scarring this treatment may not be right for you.

Sublative Rejuvenation using Radiofrequency (RF)

What is it?

Over time, our skin’s youthful appearance and texture is affected by the cumulative effects of collagen and moisture loss, as well as sun exposure. By stimulating collagen production and increasing cell turnover, sublative rejuvenation enables you to achieve more youthful looking hands. This technology has been shown to effectively treat mild to moderate wrinkles, red and brown spots, and textural irregularities. This is truly the next generation of safe and effective technology.

How does it work?

Radio frequency energy is precisely directed to the skin in an array of tiny matrix spots. Healthy skin around the spots accelerates the healing process of the affected skin. Post treatment, increased levels of beneficial new collagen and new healthy skin cells are produced. Mild to moderate wrinkles and superficial skin discolouration are reduced. The texture of your skin becomes smoother and more elastic.

What about side effects?

Sublative rejuvenation with RF is a very safe and effective solution for all skin types.

Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) Treatment

What is it?

PRP is a treatment that rejuvenates the skin by stimulating collagen, elastin, and hyaluronic acid at all levels – including the epidermis, the dermis, and the subdermal tissues. It is becoming more popular as a cosmetic treatment, but has been used in other areas of medicine for some time, eg wound healing and to promote healing in sports injuries. The procedure is particularly suitable for delicate skin like that on the back of the hand. It is excellent for improving overall texture and is perfect to follow other skin treatments that stimulate collagen production, for example after the Elos Sublative RF resurfacing procedure.

How does PRP work?

The term platelet rich plasma is used to describe plasma that has been concentrated to contain a high percentage of platelets. Platelets are rich in growth factors and other substances that promote tissue healing and collagen production. During a typical treatment session, blood is taken from your arm, and then separated in a centrifuge to concentrate the platelets. This platelet rich plasma is activated with calcium before being injected under the skin using a very fine needle. At Shine Clinic in Bribane, we often use a needling device, called the Dermastamp, to inject the PRP solution while it needles the skin. This is a great combination for stimulating collagen.

An initial course of three treatments performed 6–8 weeks apart is recommended. Every treatment will further stimulate collagen production. Skin quality and texture will continue to improve over several months. Generally a single follow up treatment every 6–12 months will help to maintain results.

What about side effects of PRP?

Because your own blood is being used for this treatment, this natural volumiser is safe for just about anyone with no possibility of an allergic reaction. Patients should expect to have some swelling, minor bruising and redness after the treatment and this can take 24–48 hours to settle.

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