Combined Stories of Those Harmed by Cosmetic Medical Devices

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Combined Stories of Those Harmed by Cosmetic Medical Devices

PostPosted by hopeful19 » Sun Aug 08, 2010 3:50 pm

Please, do not respond to this post or add comments. But, please do add your own story or stories you've found from other locations on the Internet. If you are new to this board or reading these stories, please realize that these types of things do not happen to everyone who has IPL/laser procedures. If you are experiencing any of the symptoms that brought you to this website, just realize that there is anxiety associated with the thought and fear that these things happen because of cosmetic medical devices. What has happened to many may not happen to you. Our stories and those we've collected from various sites are a testimony to what is possible, but not what is inevitable for everyone. ~~~Added by DCNGA

The following is a compilation of individual stories found all over the internet, of those harmed by IPL and other FDA cosmetic devices. The first one is written by Cherry, found on her daughter, Angela Walker's (awalk), personal blog, which continues to help and educate many. Angela passed away on October 16, 2009, two years after her Fraxel treatment. I hope the below can help to illustrate that we are not a small, insignificant number of casualties, but human beings who have been greatly harmed....seeking out help. We are proof of a medical industry coverup that is knowingly concealing the truth and that the FDA is supporting. The stories speak for themselves and I hope it will encourage other's to back the truth and doctors to consider taking measures to prevent this. Until this is acknowledged, the list will continue.
Nov 25 2009

"Do not do.... ruined my life! This is a follow up to awalks tragedy. I posted that although she is gone and I miss her very much.... the LIFE she had AFTER having fraxel was not living. If God could send her home today I would not want her back in the mental pain and anguish she was in from the fraxel restore and her face damage from some irresponsible person. For Doctors and Nurses to play medical yo yo with peoples life is a disgrace to human dignity..... as a cancer survivor I am pleased with new technologies that save lifes and research that helps the sick and people in pain that are terminal..... but to use humans as medical guinnea pigs and rats is disgusting. To think we have a group of interest to protect the rats ...pigs and other animals (peta) and none to protect our human race is definitely a sad state! These are our sisters ... brothers ..mothers.. grandmothers... and MY daughter. The cost of perfection and vanity is just not worth the cost..... a person imprisoned in there soul because the error cannot be fixed!!!!! No Thank you...... I love life too much .. even now with my beautiful daughter gone. I am not angry I am just ashamed ...... very ashamed that the person out there who did this can continue to do this for profit and greed..... Then can shut there eyes and actually sleep at night. This is more scary to me than disfigurement."

August 4, 2010

"I unfortunately want to document here, on the IPL and Laser Damage blog, that I have suffered more than just fat loss from IPL. I have suffered nerve/muscle damage as well. I trusted this FDA approved machine, administered by a board certified doctor to correct acne scars and stop hair growth on my chin and upper lip. My face was mutilated and my life permanently altered by this device, which I was told and assured was safe, non-invasive.
Whether it be said or proved how many people are being affected or damaged from these devices, each individual life counts and this damage should not be minimized by doctors, the manufacturers or the FDA. The public has the right to know possible side affects that these devices cause before they receive the treatments. Patients are not being told.

Doctors insisted it was impossible for Thermage to melt fat, which was later proven, and now legally must warn patients beforehand. Doctors will tell you it is not possible for fat loss to occur with the IPL, but that is not true. I am proof that it does happen, it happened to me. If you want to trust the information provided by doctors performing IPL and using other cosmetic devices then do so at your own risk.

The FDA is not enforcing further research or testing to prove our damage, so there is no proof out there that is required to reveal it is happening,other than the stories like mine and so many others on our support board and all over the Internet. Many have and will continue to be harmed, as long as those affected are dismissed or not heard. It's sad. My intention, please just know, is to make you aware that it is happening and of the possibility that it can happen to you as well. Slim or not, decide if the risk is worth it to you.
If you are reading this and have already been harmed by IPL or other lasers please report it to Erin Brockovich's site, she has a link under "product liability" on her website to collect the data of those harmed. Also, for much more helpful information, insight and support from others harmed and places to go to receive help if damaged, please come to the IPL and Laser Damage support forum to talk more in depth. It is a safe place to help support each other through this and has helped me personally, a great deal.
This laser did not stop after melting through my fat, it kept going...burning from my insides out. I say to any doctor who disagrees. Receive the same treatment as myself, same settings, same temp, same areas and then we can talk from equal experience.
The bottom line is...these lasers and cosmetic devices are penetrating deeper then those who are administering them and selling the treatments claim. Unfortunately until the amount of those harmed proves and outweighs, the false claims, it can and will continue. Please be counted and consider at least joining the The IPL Laser Damage Support forum or writing Erin B so that you, as an individual, can be counted and help prove this damage is occurring. The more stories accumulated in one place, the easier it will be to prove this is happening to many people."
July 2010

"I had 3 IPL treatments done on my face. The first two turned out fine,but the third oh my God what a nightmare. I burned for hours afterwords,I was purple,and blistered.two weeks later I noticed a horrible smell it smelled like something rotten. The lady that did the treatment said there was no way the IPL could do that. I proceeded to go to numerous Dr's they all said there was no damage done to my skin, there was no smell. They said it was an olfactory hallucination. the smell was real, it drove me crazy. I put up with it for a year. I could not take it no more, so I lit myself on fire, i wanted to die. I survived now I got even more problems. Im just wondering if you no what might have happened with the Ipl treatment.. It ruined my life."

December 8, 2009

I am a new laser victim.
I am also suffering from a Facial Fat Atrophy following a Pulsed Dye Laser Treatment.
I had 3 sessions of PDL for my Rosacea on my cheeks and some broken capillaries around my nose. The 3rd session was 2 months ago. After that I had severe swelling for a week, and when the swelling started to subside I started noticing changes in my skin: I developed two skin depressions under both of my eyes, my cheeks "deflated", my skin is "hanging" on my face now, I look at least 10 years older that before the treatment. It seems that all of the fat and/or collagen is gone from my cheeks.
I aged 10 years in a matter of a couple of months, I am only 30...
I lknow that PDL did this to me, it seems that the laser accelerated the aging process in the treated areas (laser induced oxidative stress, DNA damage and all that). I think I look worse and worse every day.
I do not know what to do. I cannot look at myself in the mirror... because there is no "me", some other person looks back at me. I am devastated and depressed.
I feel that I have been misinformed, misled and lied to by the doctor, by laser companies..., because no one ever mentioned it that there could be such consequences. If they have all this data and choose not to share it with us before the treatment or just to ignore it, just so they could make some money- it's a crime and they should go to jail! It's one thing when someone lies to you, takes your money and runs, it's just lost money; but when that someone lies to you, takes your money and then ruins your face, it's not just the money it's your identity that is lost. That's exactly how I feel...
My doctor says that he doesn't see any difference, and yet he will not give me my "before" photos... If there is nothing to hide why not give MY photos?! And needless to say that he is the only person who doesn't see any difference, all my friends and family noticed a drastic change in my appearance.
I just want this nightmare to be over. I hope it gets better. "


AUGUST 1, 2010 1:27 AM
Anonymous said...
My baby girl, who is her daddy's princess, had 7 treatments for cystic acne and roseca. No problems and she was so happy and vital. She had next IPL on her upper chest and neck for sun damage with no early problems. 5 months later, she had her last IPL

AUGUST 1, 2010 1:27 AM
Anonymous said...
This is why her dad and I are sitting in the hospital with our daughter. This time for a cornea transplant. The full damage may never be known. Auri may be an adult now, but her dad and I will always blame ourselves. Roaccutane seems safe now.


December 15, 2009

"Has anyone had any kind of a Doctor that actually treated or diagnosed any problems regarding eye or throat damage from IPL/Laser? I read where some have experienced eye and throat problems, but never heard if you were treated for it. In 4 months I have been to several doctor appointments, blood tests, ultrasounds, CT, MRI, endoscopy, and so far everything has come back normal. But I am having extreme difficulty swallowing that has already landed me in the Emergency room, fat loss in face, my eyes are blurry, drooping, with pain, my face is drooping, jaw bones hurt and I have had extreme weight loss and muscle loss, and I can barely get anything done during the day because of the fatigue. They are finally sending me to a Neurologist because they feel I might have a neurological disease like MS or Myasthenia Gravis. I was never sick before I got burned by IPL and I know this has to be related. I read where severe infection can trigger all sorts of diseases, and my skin was infected and swollen for about 2 !/2 months. This has affected my entire body now, not just my face. Just wanted to know if anyone had these severe symptoms and if they were treated or if you have run across any scientific studies that I could get, so I could force the doctors to have to look at the connection of IPL damage and what is happening. Greatly appreciate any and all advice, I'm just so tired of being sick. HAPPY HOLIDAYS TO ALL."


Feb 18, 2009

"I just came across this board a few days ago and wanted to tell my story. In May 2007 I had one bipolar Accent RF treatment on my lower face. It hurt alot and I told the technician so but she said "try to tolerate it, you will get better results. Well my face is still burning and tingling after this long and I also lost alot of fat. I noticed the volume reduction almost immediately and was concerned but when I went back I was told that it takes 12-16 weeks for new collagen to form so I went away hopeful. Anyway I would say it kept getting worse for awhile and then it got a bit better. Maybe that is because I gained about 10 lbs even though I didn't need to, or maybe the skin has tightened a bit as at it's worst I had loose skin and I looked awful. This has been a nightmare and when I read some of your stories I could so relate. Other people who have not gone through this don't seem to understand the psychological impact it has. The worst part is that I was not informed that there was a risk and did not sign a consent form. It was presented to me as completly risk and side affects free. I am very angry that these clinics and manufacturers are getting away without warning people of this serious complication. I have tried to take legal action but cannot find a lawyer who is willing to take my case on a contingincy basis. Anyway after reading some of your stories I have some hope that this can be fixed with fat grafts. I just hope they will take. I live in Canada so it is not as easy for me to find a good doctor in my part of the country. I am wondering if anyone else here was warned of the potential fat loss risk before undergoing their treatment? People need to be made aware of this. "


March 17. 2009

"Two years ago, Ipl left me with "pinprick indentations" on my cheeks.(and worsening rosacea symptons). It looked as though someone had took a fine needle and punctured my skin hundreds of times. However a few months later the scarring is getting worse. These little indentations are now turning into little lines I just cant comprehend why more damage is occuring after 2 years, I am terrified!!!! "


January 11, 2009

"I am about 1 month out of IPL. Day 8 post IPL I noticed an indentation on my face, and they have continued to get worse as the days go by. Reading others stories It seems as if I am on the path to complete facial fat loss which is making me extremely anxious and emotional to the point I am driving myself crazy. Mirrors are my enemy. I wake up each morning scared to see what has developed over night. "


Feb 17, 2009

"Hi, well to date i have had 5 IPLS with the Lumenis One machine.
I had my first treatment on about July 7th. And have had the other four treatments around about a month apart with the last being on the 27th of november.

For the first time yesterday ive read some posts about indentations and fat loss.

Now i have just noticed 3-4 small indents on my face and i cannot be certian for when these have occurred.

Can anyone help explain these to me?

I am getting very worried about them. i am not entirely sure when they appeared but yesterday i specifically looked on my face to see if i had any and i found some.

Is it possible that more indents might appear and fat loss could occur???
CAN you have a few indents with no fat loss??

Any help is greatly appreciated, i am feeling very anxious and have CANCELLED my future 3 IPLs"


Feb 17. 2009

"My situation started just over a year ago after I had the "new improved" thermage treatment in a London clinic, with a so called highly regarded London Doctor.The worst thing of all is that I feel I was manipulated into having the treatment as the doctor managed to home in on the fact that I had some insecurities about my looks, I'm sure that a light peel or something similar would have been sufficient anyway....

I asked so many questions about side effects, and was assured that there would not be any, but I might look a little puffy which would calm down after a couple of days.I went ahead with the treatment because I trusted the Doctor, and thought she wanted the best for me...

Fast forward a year later, and thousands of pounds spent trying to correct the devastating fat loss, indentations and dents, on a once fairly decent, and young looking face...I have seen numerous doctors and cosmetic surgeons in London, each with their own theory, and ideas about how to help or not!

I can't begin to explain the time, energy, and finance that a one hour so called non invasive treatment has caused me.

Recently though I have found a couple of great Doctors in London that have helped repair some of the damage with temporary fillers , but it hasn't been easy, and it is an ongoing situation, which is also expensive and time consuming.

I am moving on with my life now, but the first sixth months were really hard, I became a virtual recluse, shutting out family and friends, and generally feeling embarassed, and stupid for taking such a risk with my own face!!!!

I feel more confident now, as some of the volume/dents have been restored with temporary fillers, but there is always a sad feeling in the back of my mind that I will never quite look the same as I used to ever again.

I just hope that somehow our stories and experiences can and will make a difference."

October 5, 2008

"I have been trying to put this behind me and moving on, but telling my story here just may help someone, so here it goes.....
In May of 2007 I had an IPL treatment for some minor sunspots. The machine was a Palomar Starlux. It was done at the Radiance Medspa in Charlotte, NC. An esthetician performed the procedure. I was 37 years old.

Within a few days I knew something was not right. I first saw little indentions in my skin and tiny holes forming along my chin and cheeks. Soon after that a burning started deep down inside my skin, at a cellular level. It kept me up for days and I put ice on my face but nothing helped. Within a couple of weeks my cheeks were gone, my chin pointy with no soft tissue on it, my nose caved in, my temples thinned completely out and were at hard angles, my forhead started shriveling up and scrunching to the middle and every inch of my face seemed old and gaunt. It sent me into complete panic and depression. I was confused at how fast it happened, and devastated that my plump youthful face disappeared practically overnight. Life stood still for me and my family. We were consumed with this tragedy. After searching for answers I found similar stories and came to the conclusion that this horror I was living through did not have a good outcome. I needed surgery, and an attorney. I went searching for both."


December 12. 2008

"My story is similar to yours: I had IPL 6 months ago (for pigment spots) and since then I am a changed woman!! I first noticed the fat loss 6 weeks after the IPL to the date. Poof- cheeks are gone. After that the fat loss slowly but surely continued to other areas and is now over my entire face. The fat loss is bad but, the worst thing to me is the quality of my skin. I have indentations, lines, tears, pinpoint deep scars, shallow scars- all over my face. Small blemishes lead to scars. I have tried Vit C serum, copper peptides and various vitamins- none seem to help. It is odd- I feel tingling on my face and then notice a new indentation or line.

My heart goes out to all of you who have gone through what I have- it is almost unbearable.

I am trying to find more about this condition: lipoatrophy. A lot of HIV patients on meds go through the same thing- the HIV meds damage their mitochondria and this leads to fat loss. There are probably some similarities here.

Does anyone know when the fat loss will stop?"

December 6, 2009

"This is my story.

I was 31 at the time, looking to remove an age spot from my skin. I went to a day spa in New York which was my first mistake. The aesthetician recommended doing a photofacial. He used the Palomar machine.
When I woke up the next day, I had deep lines under my eyes and a dent above my lip. I did not know it, but I was experiencing fat loss.
It is a year later. I have been to several doctors seeking opinions. Many are not familiar with the procedure and finally, I went to one who told me the collagen was broken in my face.

I do not look the same. People tell me that I look thinner and I have not lost any weight. I look older and now I have two indentations around my mouth area and my cheeks are gone. My face looks almost flat. The only time it seems to have any shape is when I smile. I no longer wear my hair up as the difference is so noticable.

I did not want to leave my house for awhile. I have lost my confidence and I really feel that there is no help for this. So many people just think it is aging, but I know it is from the treatment. It makes me feel alone. "


"Please tell me what is happening. I had one pixel laser treatment under my eyes in November. I was extremely red for about 10 days. Once the redness was gone, my eyes looked 10 years older. They are much more wrinkled and sunken due to fat loss. Every morning my eyes are swollen with fluid. I am even taking diuretics which I have never done. I am a small person. What is causeing the swelling? If I have fat grafting will it be permanant? Does anyone know what Dr. is experienced with the under eye area? I would appreciate any advice. I am so depressed, I can barely leave my house. Thank you for your help."


January 14, 2009

"I had some acne indented scars already but since i got yag and laser genesis done, i have more shallow pit marks on my face. Some didnt show up until 3 months later. When i take a picture close up, my skin looks lumpy with indents. YUCK!!! I asked my derm (a different one that did the laser) and he told me that he didnt see scars but texture problems. I got lasers for rosacea. I feel so depressed that i dont even want to face the world. How do u know the difference between scars and fat loss?"

August 16, 2009

In January of 08 my husband wanted to bless me with something that I had been wanting to have done for a long time and he helped make it possible for me to have a thermage procedure. I am in my mid forties and I was not unhappy with my appearance but wanted to have the procedure done as more of a maintenance. I asked many,many questions many, many times to both the Dr and her staff before finalizing my appointment and was reassured every time that the only side effect that might possibly happen might be some swelling and redness, or possibly some burning that wouldn't last. I had the procedure and had no swelling, no redness and no burning, but about 5 days later I began noticing a couple of lines and dents on my skin. I had always taken very good care of my skin and especially in protecting it from the sun. My skin had always been smooth and clear and I wasn't sure what was happening. I first noticed these new marks in a hotel mirror as my family and I were traveling back overseas where we work. We were working in one of the world's poorest countries at the time and for the next several weeks I kept noticing that something was changing. Then I began noticing some volume loss and began seeing lots of floaters in my eyes all the time. I was crying my eyes out every day because I didn't know what was happening. It was difficult for me to reach the doctor's office in the States where I had had the procedure done because I was calling from a remote area overseas and when I finally did reach the office they wouldn't let me speak to the doctor. My husband was a great comfort to me during that time. He wasn't sure exactly what was happening either, but he reassured me over and over again that we could get through anything together.

I began to do as much research as I could from a remote area of the world and finally learned that there were people who had suffered damage and volume loss from this procedure. This info certainly helped me to finally understand what was happening, but it didn't change that when I looked in the mirror I looked different. My appearance wasn't socially unacceptable but when I looked in the mirror it didn't look like me anymore. I cried every day and I didn't want to do anything but cry and pray. Praying was the only time that I felt unafraid and had courage come to my heart to help me be strong. My husband kept reassuring me he would help me get through this and somehow it would be OK. Three months into this trauma we decided I should come back to the States to see if there was something that could be done to help restore the damage. So the journey began. This was all very unfamiliar to me and I didn't really know where to start. I first saw the doctor who performed the procedure and she denied that the procedure had caused any damage. She was adament that it wasn't caused by her procedure and told me the skin change must be from sun damage (which I thought was strange because the marks on my skin were all one certain shape and size. I never knew sun damage looked like that and that it just suddenly appears. I also didn't know the sun could make dents.) "

December 25, 2008

( I've added this person whole thread, as it includes his doctors response. The text book standard response for these doctors is to say "they have never seen this before". ( I question if they've had their vision checked, as it seems they "not have seen" over and over again.)

"I have had one IPL treatment. It has been a week now, and I just noticed a indented line on my cheek. I am very concerned. Please help me understand this."

"I have been in contact with him daily. A few of his responses:

"I have not seen this effect as the result of Ipl in 10 years and doubt it has any permanent significance. I do not think this will persist so we need to give it a week or more and reevaluate and I don't think youNeed to do anything more at this time. One usually can see this with radiofrequency treatments but notIpl. You did not have a veryIntense treatment therefore hard toTie it into the Ipl so be patient and we'll reevaluate soon and again I have not seen any permanent effects ever with Ipl. We'll reevaluate in 5 to 6days. Sent from my iPhone"

"Trenton. I wish I had an easy explanation but again I have never had this experience with IPL. Indentacians that I have heard of usually (and even then only rarely)occur after radiofrequency treatments and generally only after very high settings. You had one IPL session with low to moderate settings. I am attempting to contact Dr Johnson in Tennessee and since it is closer to you we might arrange for him to see you if you like. This appears as a loss of subcutaneous fat and again I am assuming it will return to normal in time Since this is not an expected cmplication ofIPL I will continue to seek other outside opinions to eventually get thru this with you. Dr S"

and the latest

"I had Dr Goldman review your treatment and view your photos(before and after)and his response is as follows: "I agree with your impression. I have NEVER seen this in any IPL treatment I have used in the 15+ years. And excess pressure on the area which may be somewhat swollen from the treatment" could be the cause. "I would follow him and predict everything will be OK once the edema settles down". So you can see Dr G also does not feel this is permanent since many years on both our parts has never created fat injury with IPL which is too mild and too superficial..We shall continue to observe and do no more quite yet--Dr S"

That is what is so scary is that they have never seen this problem even temporarily. "

"My skin continues to get worse every day. I wake up each morning with more indentations in my face. I have read other peoples stories about this exact problem from IPL, and the entire face usually begins to lose fat around the 2-3 month mark.

I need some xanax.. my nerves are shot..

I wouldnt recommend IPL unless you have severe rosacea, I went to one of the best and still am dealing with these problems, with no idea of what to expect, or any advice from any doctor.

Its killing me"

I had the Lumenis One Machine, and i am certain of this because befoere i went in to the place i knew exactly what it looked liked and thats the one they used on me.

May 2, 2010

"I'm getting more and more convinced that each IPL/laser treatment causes so much oxidative and thermal stress, that it leads to premature aging. The temporary collagen plumping effect masking what's going on underneath until after cumulative insult, or likewise just one overly intense therapy, it brings all the damage to the surface.

Perhaps a person can handle several treatments, 10, maybe even 20...but the fact remains I did these successfully for 8yrs with a skilled doctor, settings and lasers never changed, only to have this last one be the final blow.

I don't know how bad it's going to get. It's literally like my face has aged overnight and it's far more terrifying to be losing the fat underneath my skin than when I began my battle even with severe Rosacea. I cycle between hope, determination, and despair."

July 7, 2010

"I'm 33, and it's been 2 year + 3 months for me since my thermage treatment.

Unlike others with fat loss, I've had swelling/welts along the cheek area where the thermage was done. I can clearly see where the thermage was done because the "good" skin on the cheek looks normal, while the "thermage" portion is a bit swollen.

I have noticed that if someone presses hard against my skin where the thermage was done, it will leave a permanent indent in the skin. So -sigh- I have to be careful when going to an eye doctor or even a hair cut because any pressure on the skin may leave an indent.

Strangely enough, I have more or less accepted things as they are. I hope that in the long run, the damage from thermage will diminish.

If anyone else has some stories about thermage (2 years+ after treatment), it would be great to hear from you."


Nov. 20, 2008

"I had Aramis laser and I think (not sure) it's similar to IPL...I've suffered some negative side effects as well. The skin from my temple down to my lower cheeks is now visibly changed and different than the normal skin I had prior to the laser treatments. The skin seems tight, thin, and has a reddish discoloration....I went to a derm and the conclusion for the time being is that the skin is now more susceptible to yeast growth and I have folliculitis, or seborrheic dermatitis. Right now I'm applying a special shampoo on those areas to see if any improvements will occur...But we'll see..I recommend you see dermatologist (perhaps another one) to find out what kind of damage you have and if it's treatable."


March 6, 2009

"I have to tell you -- I got ONE IPL treatment at the end of 2007 by a woman named Carole Lea Burns in New York. It has RUINED my face. I promise you, my breakouts only got worse, and my skin has aged considerably since the treatment.

I honestly think it has ruined my last few years, and I have gone through emotional and mental trauma due to the DRAMATIC aging that has taken place since the treatment. I PROMISE YOU -- it is NOT WORTH it. try something safer. please, for your own sake. I don't want anyone to go through what I did."

July 3, 2009


"Yes! I had my first IPL 3 weeks ago and it has been as if I have the flu ever since.

No energy, aching joints, and sooooo tired.

I can hardly drag myself out of bed, and I am a person who runs 2 miles a day and has tons of energy normally.

REALLY odd, and very difficult to deal with.

I found your posting because I came online to search and see if anyone else experienced this."

I just found this thread from a long time ago.
This issue was discussed on another forum as well. If you are feeling tired all the time after having an IPL or a Laser Treatment, you should get checked out by an endocrinologist.
These treatments are known to affect the thyroid gland. And as you know, when that's messed up, you will feel tired and fatique all the time, some people notice hair loss, weakened nails, weight issues, etc. No one tells us these things... I had to learn it the hard way. I had PDL (Pulsed Dye Laser) treatment, which ruined my skin. I think there is some fat and/or collagen loss, and the skin does look much older than before the treatment. I had it done for my very mild Rosacea, and it's much much worse now... I wish I'd never done this treatment."


Posted on June 14, 2009 by Julian Johnson

We have for some time been investigating a potential claim for a young women in her 20s with a fair complexion who underwent IPL for freckles on her face, including eyelids. Our client suffered quite severe iris damage as a consequence of the treatment. It seems the IPL damaged the pigment in her iris, leading to an asymmetrical appearance.
We have now received our expert's report. This has confirmed the inappropriateness of such treatment to this area, the danger of the sort of complication our client experienced and the need for titanium (or other effective) eye protectors for any IPL treatment in proximity to the eyes (our client was given paper 'protectors').

This case raises concern quite apart from for our poor client who is left permanently disfigured. As with many such cases, the treatment was provided by a beautician, and at present we have no idea as to her training/qualifications (other than suspicions from the way the treatment was performed).

This seems clearly another area of 'cosmetic' medicine, crying out for better regulation.
March 15, 2009

"I had three fraxels, and one deep laser resurfacing done and it ruined my face. I have hypopigmentation and scars that were small, now appear bigger. My skin never looked this bad, even on one of the worst days that I had cystic acne. The only salvation that I have found is Glytone In-Office peels and DCL glycolic cream. These two combined have made certain areas of my skin look better. I really wish I never tried lasers!"

Feb 14, 2009

"2 years ago had Fraxel treatments. My face is destroyed\. I have scars all over my face, like large pores and pitted acne, which I never face looks like an old piece of textured leather or alligator skin. My entire face is so hyperpigmented, it is scary looking. Little children cry when they see me, and they use to always smile at me or come to me. I too rarely leave my house, I have been so depressed and discusted every time I look in the mirror I cry. I am so sick and would do anything to have my old face back. I now have lines and wrinkles I never had before and under my eyes are sunken in with large hallos, my eyelids have been so stretched they now fall over my eyes, my cheeks are sunken in so I look gaunt...its like the fatty tissue under my skin was melted, the collogen, elastacin and connective tissue was destroyed. I too have verticle wrinkles under my eyes and raised white lines and marks from the laser tip all over my face,cheeks,chin and forehead. I have a line of melted skin under my now wrinkled chin. My face looks horrible and I have lost all my self confidence. I only went in for one small area of melasma and he ruined my face. The doc also ignores me and acts like there is no way the fraxel could have done it. They even burned the sclera of my eyes because they pulled down so hard. I'm grateful I didnt go blind. I try to avoid everyone, I don't want old friends to see me. when they do they are shocked and ask me what happened to my face. MY pics are as dramatic as yours except my hyperpig is worse, and I don't get the recurring sores. I found another girl who went to the same doc as me, the same month, who was also damaged , but her skin isnt pitted I dont think. I think we should get in touch. There are enough of us emotionally and physically scarred whose livs have been horribly changed because of this, that it warrents serious attention...especially since it seems we are at a much greater risk for skin cancer now-with the dna damage. I even have areas,that look suspicious. Maybe we can find a great group of docs to fix this, so much research is being done on skin, stem cells etc.(a univ in PA is actually researching it to help regenerate skin) There has to be some hope...I still want to do things with my son in the outdoors. Please contact me, there is strength in numbers. I will share my pics w/ you to your email, Thank you for sharing yours on line. NO One should do Fraxel with these huge risks, it is not worth it for any thing in the world. Its been the worst thing that has ever happened to me in my life. The doc told the other girl the machine malfunctioned...that seems like a class action law suit. I think he put it too high for my skin and I think he let an assistant do it, because of their talk, but I had the goggles on and couldnt see."


May 18, 2009

"I had fraxel a year ago and I am experiencing the same thing. Skin seems really leathery, brownish in color and large pores....I look about 10 years older than I am!"

Nov. 24, 2009

"I have also missed my child growing up.(his games, weekend activities, etc.) I once had beautiful skin and now when people ask I tell them I have a rare skin disease because it is too much to explain. For almost a year I woke up when the sun came up and went back to sleep under my bed because it is dark and no one can see me, it took my husband to divorce me to actually realize I was still alive no matter what I look like. What I look like is a 30 year old in a 70 year old face. I need to know what you have done and if anything has gotten any better. I am lost and dont know what to do or if there is anything I can do???"


June 23, 2009
"I have also been scarred by the fraxel re:pair,laser marks all over,cost $ 4000.00,i am looking help in truely repairing my skin."

June 24, 2009

"Please let me know if you find a solution. I too am living with horrible dis-figurement from Fraxel."


July 4, 2009

"I had the Fraxel repair 2 weeks ago and have been having a hard time with it. My skin looks like sandpaper, i have new wrinkles, blackheads and horrible itching. The doctor put me on steroidal cream today but it still itches, enough that it is even hard to sleep. Will the skin one has right afterwards turn over or is this the skin your stuck with ad nausea (and it could make you nauseous). I am 59 and had good skin before but wanted to make even better skin and my sister told me it would be my last chance to make new collagen. What can I expect. I already traumatized my 19 year old daughter who picked me up from the doctor's office with my bloody face. This treatment robs you of time and changes your focus from the outside world to yourself and your new mole-like existence. Reactions anyone?"


July 24, 2009

"I look 20 years older and my skin is ruined." -fraxel patient


August 27, 2009

"I am 11months post fraxel repair and am still trying to rid my face of the post inflammatory hyperpigmentation I was left with. Hydroquinone does not work.Nor does triluma. Has anyone else experienced this.... if so any suggestions about how I can rid myself of this disfiguring problem would be much appreciated Thanks"


Nov 14, 2009

"I have been housebound with my own face disaster for the past 4 months and I have been reading Angie's review and posts for inspiration and the strength to keep going forward. Some days it has been really, really hard and I know exactly how she felt not ever wanting to leave the house and missing out on everything good about life. I literally just burst into tears upon reading the news of her death. It is simply unbelievable. What a waste of a wonderful, caring woman who made one bad choice because not enough information was available for her to make an informed decision. Shame on the FDA. Shame on the medical profession. To all doctors - WE TRUST YOU. We trust you to know what you are doing. We trust that the equipment and products you use are safe. We trust you not to hurt us when we come to you for help. My sincere condolences to Angie's family and friends."


June 6, 2010

"OMG!!! Fraxel has been the worst thing i have ever done in my life. mine is not half as bad as the open scars, so i can only imagine how you feel-poor baby! But I went in to even out my skin, bought a package including 5 ipl's and at the end a Fraxel. I did not even want to do it, and my doctor convinced me! He said easy, with no down time. WELL, I broke out in what looked like a million whiteheads in the area that he id it, for days, i looked like a mutant. I cried, did not go to work, etc...When it healed, I was left with more discoloration than when i originally started, with a mustache like darkspot over my upper lip. And, anytime I feel like i look ok, and then I catch myself in a mirror, I cringe. Yhe sun makes it way worse too, so, now, as a runner, I cant even go outside. and fraxel did this. Did anyone ever find out about a class action lawsuit? i cannot imagine there is not one, with all of these complaints!!!!"


June 18, 2010

"I am a 54 year old female and have had 2 Fraxel Laser treatments. (For evening skin tone, tiny lines...) I am 6 months post op the 2nd treatment and I continue to break out with the "Fraxel acne" they warn you about. These bumps are not really acne - even though they have the outward appearance - they are unique to Fraxel patients. They are filled with clear fluid and bleed leaving a small hole immediately after scratching them. The scab and discoloration lasts for weeks. MOST unpleasant. I blame the Fraxel treatment as I had never experienced any such breakouts prior to the treatyment. When will they stop appearing???A year? I have olive skin - do not burn when tanning and have blue eyes. My skin is NOT sensitive. Be warned!! ANY improvemnt to my skin has been overshadowed by the bumps!!! (As the bumps are NOT acne - the acne treatments are useless)"


June 26, 2010

"Hello everyone. I had Fraxel done on part of my face in 2007. I have a scathing review of it BTW on the reviews. Anyway, 3 years later the area performed has basically lost all life. I have fat loss, hyperpigmentation, and many, many scars in the treated area. I also almost died as a result of a bacterial infection caused by this. So much for trust in doctors. Well, my only solution to this so far has been silicone sheeting. I have been using it and it's been giving life to the treated skin. I have no clue why it works or how but it is simply amazing. I hope anyone reading this trys it out. My skin itself feels and looks approximately 50% better. I really think the Fraxel destroyed all the glands in the my particular case. All oil and sweat glands. That, along with the scar tissue has been awful. Anyway, if anyone wants to email me please do. I am expanding my search for different at home products and so far Rejuveness gets the nod of approval. I hope I help someone going through this insanely stressful ordeal."

July 20, 2010

"At the end of last year I did 3 fraxal treatments. I was told it would take 5-6. The pain is horrible. I did have severe redness and swelling for about 4-5 days after. I suffer from melasma and was told after the 2nd treatment I would see a difference. I noticed nothing at all. About 6 months after the treatments my melasma is worse and very dark now. The fraxal treatment left a few white patches on my face as well. In my area they charge 1000 to 1500 per treatment it is so not worth the money. I would not recommend this to anyone..........the pain is horrible."


March 30, 2010

"I had Fraxel one year ago and am having complications. My skin look awful and is scarring. I am having a hard time finding someone to help me. Does anyone know of a doctor specializing in laser damage? Is there a device that can be used to look at the dermis? Thank you."


April 13, 2010

"I have been wanting to post this, and finally decided it's time. I had a fraxel done in September of 2009 (7 months ago). I'm 35 years old and had sun damage on my face that I was hoping to get rid of. If I could go back and undo that day, I would. It was horrible, in every way possible. I want people to read this and really think about what they are getting themselves into. First, the pain from the procedure was excruciating (even with numbing gel). The next day, my face swelled up like a balloon, a purply-red balloon--my eyes were almost closed from the swelling it was so severe. Throughout the day, tiny blisters began forming all over my face (about 10 billion of them!) I couldn't leave the house for a week because they began to pop and scar over. My face was so scary-and there was a clear line of demarcation on my jawline where they stopped the Fraxel. I was putting antibiotic cream on my face every day and took Valtrex to ward off any cold sores. It took about a month and a half for the blisters to clear up completely. No matter how much makeup I wore, people would still comment and ask if I'd done something like gone suntanning and gotten burned severely. Even today, 7 months later, I still have that line of demarcation on my jawline. My face is still a ruddy color and makeup still doesn't completely cover. And I still have all of my sun damage from before. The Fraxel didn't do anything good whatsoever for my skin. The doctor stated that I needed to get a series of 3-5 to get the full benefit.??? Benefit of what??? I am currently researching ways to make my skin look normal again, and will update if I find anything that helps. My advice to those out there considering is to look into other options that have more long-term favorable outcomes. I would take back that day that I had this Fraxel damage done if I could."

August 7, 2010

"I was burned by an RN performing a V-Beam (Pulsed Dye Laser treatment) on me. I have suffered collateral damage to areas of my face that weren't directly treated due to active thermal bystander effect. Looking back at the after photos, some of the damage was immediately there, but I was so focused on the burned areas that I wasn't really looking at the rest of my face. About one month after the treatment was when I really noticed the collateral damage. It's been over three months since I had the V-Beam and my skin is still changing by the day, it opened up all my pores, caused icepick scarring, changed my skin texture and caused lines and dents.

The Dr. of the nurse who did the treatment denied it could happen (of course). She blamed it on aging. They got rid of my real before photos so there was no proof."

Sept. 7, 2010

"I was burned in a medspa in 2007 that used 4 lasers on me in one session. I have nerve damage and damage to my eyes. My appearance is affected as well. I have pain in my checks that makes it impossible for me to lay my head on a pillow to sleep w/out pain medication. I am trying to get regulations passed in my state. I emailed every state rep and filed complaints with the dept of health."

Nov. 23, 2010

"Here is my Fraxel story. I had very bad, deep acne scars for years and my dermatologist recommended Fraxel. I went into a laser center and was told Fraxel would help with the scars. So, I paid $1,000 and had my first treatment fall 2007. I was very disappointed because except for a little peeling there was no change in my skin. Then the doctor told me I would need at least 4 treatments to see results. So I went ahead and spent another $3,000. A small change. The doctor told me I needed more. Another 3 treatments. I guess the doctor finally decided to give me a stronger laser because the last 3 treatments were very aggressive. My skin bled, peeled, turned beet red, broke out in pimples. But still had some scars. Then I made the worst mistake ever. I went back in April 2010 for one last treatment. It was very aggressive; my skin peeled, broke out, etc. When I finally healed I noticed a wrinkled, dark patch on my forehead. After a few weeks it peeled off, but grew back again. Now 8 months later the dark scaly patch is still there, still peeling. I have been back to the doctor twice and she says she doesn't know why it's there. It's awful. The skin is wrinkled and dark and scaly so make-up doesn't help. I regret that last treatment so much! This place got $7,000 of my money and disfigured me!"
"There's almost no risk involved," says Stephen Fanning, CEO of Solta Medical, which owns Fraxel.

The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who do evil, but rather those who sit back & let it happen.
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Re: Stories of Those Harmed by Cosmetic Medical Devices

PostPosted by WG1 » Wed Aug 11, 2010 10:19 am

It's pretty much embarrassing for me to talk about the devices. Because there were so many.
I had an IPL by a nurse practitioner here in town. I still don't know what the device was. It significantly darkened the melasma spots on my face. I figured he didn't know what he was doing and went to a dermatologist named Dr. Joseph Leiker of Kansas City. He said he could fix it and gave me Palomar starlux IPL and Laser Genesis on the same day! On that day, he talked me into booking an appointment for Palomar 1540 fractional laser. That was mid-March. After the 2 week healing time for fractional my face still burned. It started to feel saggy at some point. I would lie on my back at night and my face would suck into my teeth and make a popping sound when I opened my mouth and released the suction. When I tried to do yoga my face felt like it flopped around and it upset me too much to do it. My face looked saggy to me in the mirror, especially along the nasial labial fold. My cheeks look deflated. My eyes looked hollow and crinkly and pores enlarged all over my face. I started to notice a few tiny scars that weren't there before and a general cragginess on the surface of my skin.
I quit going to dance classes because I couldn't stand to look at myself in the mirror. I became depressed but the anxiety was worse. I went into a doctors office shaking and he put me on xanax, which worsened my situation considerably. I had a terrible reaction to xanax which is a whole other story. I include that as a warning to others.

The pain, tingling, buzzing and burning in my face continued and worsened. My jaw and the glands under my jaw were particularly sore. My ears hurt and so did my sinuses. The discomfort and sensations were not consistent but fluctuating and changing all of the time. I've always snored but my snoring became substantially worse. The skin all over my body, particularly my arms and legs, got dry and crinkly and lost elasticity. A doctor told me I lacked magnesium even though I was taking supplements. Low magnesium causes dehydration and there is a direct relationship between low magnesium levels and hypothyroidism. One of the side effects of hypothyroid is dry skin. Something systemic is going on for several of us.

Between 3-4 weeks ago I began breaking out all over my face with a strange sort of milia that I have never experienced before in my life. I have heard others report this after fractional laser. I don't know if it's also been associated with IPL. I still have it today.

I sent before and after photos to a few fat grafting surgeons. Both Dr. Tzikas and Dr. Mark Berman confirmed that I had lipoatrophy. I did not even mention that to Dr. Berman and I had sent before photos to him that were less than a year old. Dr. Berman called me personally and asked me what happened. Did I have IPL? He told me that several people had been seeking FG from him for lipoatrophy following IPL. The offices of Dr. Tzikas and Dr. Law also confirmed that they have been treating people for IPL and laser atrophy.
I had been to four derms, a naturopath, two family practioners and two acupuncturists and none of them could stop the burning in my face. All but one of the derms told me that laser and IPL could not damage your skin. The one exception seemed reluctant to discuss the matter, threw a script for retenoid cream at me (which I'm glad I didn't fill given Prague's testimony) and fairly ran from the room. He looked terribly agitated and uncomfortable and didn't even inspect my skin. I tried a variety of cures and, following months of research, came to the conclusion that the only effective treatment is fat transfer.

I would have had to wait for Tzikas, Law, Hoenig and Lam but I was able to book an appointment with Berman. I was impressed with him calling me personally and that he had the eye to see my lipoatrophy and that he attributed it to cosmetic devices. I was impressed that he mentioned that the FDA is not screening devices carefully. I found a lot of positive feedback on his technique and, while I was terribly apprehensive about doing anything to my face, booked the appointment and underwent fat grafting on July 12th. I am in the process of healing and won't be able to give a satisfactory assessment of the graft for some time. I will tell you this. My sinuses have improved since the graft. My teeth were scraping the inside of my cheeks when I talked or chewed before and that has gone away. My face is sore from the graft but it is no longer burning and buzzing as much. There is tingling. Obviously, my cheeks no longer look deflated because they're swollen. It will be at least a month before I have a good idea how it will look.

I tried to have ANA testing like Prague did before FG. I tried to find a way to have TBARS assay. My doctor refused the ANA and the assay is kind of hard to get (you can order a kit online). I wanted to see what was going on with mitochondria, DNA and oxidation before and after FG. To see if the FG really does halt and reverse the process. I believe it does but wouldn't it be nice to have some proof? I can no longer be the test subject as I've already undergone FG. I'd like to urge others to have ANA and TBARS or TUNEL assay before and after FG. We could take that data and build a case, not only for the medicinal effects of FG, but also to show that there IS DNA damage following IPL or laser treatments.

While I don't have much proof I am convinced that my dietary supplements significantly slowed down the rate of my damage. I noticed lipoatrophy about a month after fractional laser. It wasn't terribly noticeable to others but it was very noticeable to me. I started researching supplements for skin, mitochondrial and glutathione support and I did not notice as much change over the next few months. It did get a little worse but at a much slower rate. The milia problem surfaced only recently, however, and is ongoing. If you're interested in the supplements I use see this post: topic219.html

All along and even now my face has been overproducing oil around the clock. I wash my face and an hour later there's an oil slick again. Remember that the skin all over my body has dried out but my face keeps pumping the oil. I always had an oily skin problem but this is ridiculous. I've never seen another human being get this oily this fast.

Written 8/7/10 (2-3 weeks after the previous writing. I was hoping that fat would make all of the symptoms go away but I continue to suffer worsening systemic problems. I had none of these problems before laser and IPL except I occasionally suffered mild gall bladder pain. I used to have such a wonderful life! I was a dancer, a fun teacher, a happy mother, I was vibrant and blissful. I really lived my life. Now just trying to go back to work is causing me physical distress. I'm too tired and achy to do my job.

Systemic symptoms:

Chronically swollen and tender lymph nodes under my jaw and down my neck and throughout the lymphatic system
Liquid in ears. This is uncomfortable but not severely painful
Muscle aches throughout my body but particularly in my legs and back and neck. This pain substantially increases with mild physical exertion.
Less muscle definition throughout my body. Flabbiness.
Distended stomach, much greater swelling following mild physical exertion. This is accompanied by discomfort, an overly-full feeling.
Pain on my right side along the ribcage. It feels like a very tender bruise. It might somehow be related to lipo or I have a bad bruise that I can't see? This really hurts.
Seborrhoeic dermatitis-LIKE skin condition or little bumps or pimples on skin with mild crustiness and mild redness on my face, neck and back. This skin condition may be linked to vitamin B6 deficiency.
Overproducing oil on my face.
Dry, crinkly, aged skin on arms and legs, hands and feet that includes the appearance of cellulite. My skin looks suddenly aged. If I pinch it it bunches. I wake up with deep sheet marks that take time to go away. No amount of moisturizer or oil of any kind makes this odd dryness go away.
The skin over my knees is baggy-looking. It may be due to loss of muscle definition in the rectus femoris and vastus muscles and partly due to the “dry” skin.
Pores on my arms are enlarged
Chronic gall bladder pain. I did have occasional gall bladder pain before IPL and laser.
At times I have trouble thinking clearly.
Weight gain, swelling or both
Dry hair
Toenails have huge horizontal ridges in them. In fact, I haven't cut them in awhile and the old growth is smoother than new growth. I haven't had a pedicure in over a year.
My throat often will not clear, making my voice sound raspy.
Mild stiffness in hands.
Parasthesia in the lips, nose, eyebrows. Burning and prickling was all over the face and more severe before fat grafting.
Parasthesia in other body parts from time-to-time.
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Re: Stories of Those Harmed by Cosmetic Medical Devices

PostPosted by DCNGA » Sat Sep 04, 2010 10:31 am

Chrisa's Story:

My name is Chrisa. I am 33 years old. From Athens, Greece.

I've been damaged by 2 IPL treatments, the first one was in Dec.08 and last one in Jan.09

I got convinced that IPL will diminish 6 acne scars, i had only 6 scars and a very clear healthy skin.
With no health problems, my skin didn't have one single wrinkle..seriously not one. I've never tried smoking and had always healthy habits.

I've never had any cosmetic procedure done to my face ever before getting IPL, nothing ever..

I was supposed to have 4. But after experiencing damage, a burnt portion of my eyebrow, swollen eye and blurry vision, i immediately stopped.

I had no idea what was about to follow...overall fat loss, burning sensations, every tiny detail of my face altered somehow.
Unfortunately now i have problems with the rest of my skin, not just my face.

Dry skin all over my body, my skin was normal/oily...this dryness is weird, combined with some change in color and texture..
So many details, i could write for a long time about it. I have been through several tests. Still in the process of going to doctors.

My friends and family are trying to help me with ongoing issues.

But how can they understand, this is definitely like a syndrome, a disease as an adverse effect of getting IPL.
No-one can really help. My new dermatologist diagnosed me with facial lipoatrophy..not a severe one, cheilitis and ACNE!!!...
But has no answers on when or if this will stop (the fat loss). Suggested temporary fillers, antibiotics to cure the acne and supplements--vitamins as she believes these are all symptoms of deficiencies of a weakened immune system..

Blood tests showed no deficiencies to justify my skins' serious thyroid problem and no hormone imbalances..
I am trying to figure out ways to find other people that have been harmed here in Athens by the same clinic, i feel like i was abused and raped,,i don't want to face them, it hurts. I am 100% sure there are people coping with same issues like me..For over a year now my old dermatologist was seeing the damage i've experienced, and assured me that what IPL caused will be fixed with time,,my eyebrows will regrow like before, my overall fat loss ---(he didn't believe that was from IPL) will reverse back to what i had before.. i trusted him..i was so calm,at peace, because i believed in his words, took vitamins. I had no idea this was ongoing..getting worse day by day, suddenly accelerating....up until i woke up early this month not being able to move my face..with a horrible facial--muscle--nerve pain...

Later on my mom told me ''all this time..since you've had that stupid IPL..really have you looked at old photos..your face is completely different, i am so worried'', and i did, i must say that was the biggest shock i've ever experienced..long story.
I mourn my pre-IPL face, now i am trying to accept, without feeling safe for my future health. But i have nothing to do but wait, and find ways to restore if any..

I know my life will never be the same, the dreams i had. I can't go out in the sun, as i did. So many tiny everyday details,,seriously dysfunctional.

I wish i had something else, not this is pure insanity..waking up and not knowing where your nose, lips, cheeks, chin, eyes will be..losing something day by day, feeling physical pain and praying it will stop, 'i accept its ok, but please make it stop there, i want to live carefree again, just for a day.'

Goes beyond aesthetic,,watching your cells dying, you need to endure, just for the sake of saving others from a useless IPL procedure.

I found your site by googling IPL damage..i was trying to find others with same symptoms.

I know i am not alone.
"It is a good thing to learn caution from the misfortunes of others."

"If you wish to succeed in life, make perseverance your bosom friend, experience your wise counselor, caution your elder brother, and hope your guardian genius."
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Re: Combined Stories of Those Harmed by Cosmetic Medical Dev

PostPosted by FairAmy » Thu Nov 03, 2011 2:43 pm

I have been under the care of a reputable Dermatologist since the beginning of the year. I am 48 years old and have had fairly severe Rosacea for about 8 years and finally got tired of the flushing and worsening symptoms, so I tried a few things along the way that helped temporarily and intermittently, but wanted more aggressive treatment. I had 4 Candela V-Beam treatments spaced out appropriately and was then suggested to do the Genesis Laser as well. At my last check-up with the same Dr., I was diagnosed with Demodicidosis (infestation of Demodex mites- worsening the Rosacea) on my face last week. I'm not sure if the treatments caused this or not, maybe just made my skin weak and susceptible, but before going further with recommended treatments I did some research and found your website. I since have decided to not go forward with the Genesis, as I am realizing that I have some of the symptoms others in the forum speak of. I will very likely never have laser on my face again. It's only been about 10 weeks since the last and final treatment. I now have red viens that seem to be in straight lines across my cheeks. This is very ugly, the sploches kinda worsen and relieve from one day to the next depending on the trigger factors in play (almost everything is a trigger for the flushing). I also have hightened sensitivity in my eyes from the intense light of the laser blasts. Gee I wonder if that will ever get better? Now to treat the Demodicidosis with holistic treatment is my goal and I'm getting ready to start treatments for the mites with the Chinese creams I heard about and ordered online. I had been using the Permethrin cream once a week for the past 4 weeks or so and to be honest..just don't know what to do. I will just cry if these big sploches on my cheeks get worse. Thanks for listening and don't do the laser you've been thinking about doing.
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