What are Broken Capillaries?
Capillaries are the smallest of a body’s blood vessels and are parts of its microcirculation, connecting arteries and veins, helping to enable the exchange of water, oxygen, carbon dioxide, and many other nutrients between blood and the tissues. Their endothelial linings are only one cell layer thick, measuring 5 to 10 microns in diameter (.005 – .01 mm), so they can be extremely fragile and easily damaged. These tiny vessels may be visible on the skin surface, especially where skin is thin, such as the face. Broken capillaries (known in the medical world as telangiectasia) look like thin red threads on the skin that have a webbed appearance, which is why they are often called spider veins. Spider veins are most commonly found around the nose, cheeks, mouth, neck, as well as the upper chest and legs.
People with fair skin are more prone to having broken capillaries than people with a dark or olive complexion. In addition, those with dry and dehydrated skin, as well as sensitive skin, have thinner and less protected layers of tissue, therefore making them more susceptible to this condition. Broken capillaries can be caused by trauma to the skin, age, genetics, hormones, environmental factors (such as sunburn or windburn) and a variety of medical conditions.
What’s the Best Way to Treat Broken Capillaries?
The V-beam 595 pulsed dye laser is the gold standard for the treatment of vascular lesions, including any of the following common skin conditions:
- Broken capillaries
- Red acne scars
- Surgical or burn scars
- Port wine birth marks
The V-beam works by delivering an intense but gentle burst of laser light energy onto a selected area of the skin. The laser is of a specific wavelength that is absorbed by blood vessels or pigmented cells but not the surrounding tissue. This is the reason for the selectivity of the V beam laser. It treats the vessels being targeted without harming what is around them. No anesthetic is required for the procedure. The epidermis is protected by DCD, an exclusive method that delivers a blast of cooling mist to the treatment area a fraction of a second prior to each light energy pulse. Downtime is limited to mild redness for a day or two in the area treated. Results may be visible as early as after your first treatment, though they will ultimately depend on each patient’s skin. For those with deeper or more severe vascular lesions, two to five treatment sessions may be required before you see significant results.
Another treatment option for broken capillaries and spider veins in Los Angeles is our IPL Photofacial. This procedure utilizes Intense Pulsed Light for a gentle treatment that is safe, painless, and requires no significant recovery time. IPL sends light through the skin to target the red or brown undesirable tissue, and leaves the surrounding tissue unharmed. The process is gradual and therefore, more gentle than traditional laser therapies. The IPL Photofacial treats many skin conditions including:
- Age spots (liver spots)
- Enlarged pores
- Visible blood vessels
- Unwanted freckles
- Sun damage
The treatment normally takes about five sessions and results begin to appear after one or two sessions. During this process, collagen production is stimulated, rejuvenating the skin, shrinking pores, and filling in fine lines and indentations. The result is healthier, younger looking skin.
What to Expect from Your Treatment
During your complimentary consultation at our office, Dr. Rivkin or his nurses will discuss the length and frequency of each treatment according to your specific needs as well as the best way to treat broken capillaries in your particular case. You will have the opportunity to ask questions, so that you know exactly what to expect during and after the procedure. Patients are also provided with complete post-procedural care instructions to help maintain the results of your IPL or V-beam treatment.
Dr. Rivkin’s patients know that they can get in touch with him at any time. He’s always in the office at Westside Aesthetics, and is personally involved in every treatment.
To learn more about Dr. Rivkin’s IPL Photofacial or V-bean treatment and to schedule a free consultation in Los Angeles, contact us by phone or email today. Our friendly and knowledgeable staff will be happy to answer any questions you may have.