Thursday, January 28, 2010

!! I Finally Peeled !!

Well, I finally got that yuck skin off last night.  One thing I always notice is that the peel session really amps up the burning feeling (in general and to the touch).  I wonder why the brown layer coming off would have this effect, or how could having that skin on mask the intensity of the hot feeling if it was always there?  This time I am going to ice it (or put a cold beer on it in between sips) and see if the sensation will subside any faster.  This could improve the look of it...speed the healing...or just stop the burn!

Also, when I went in for treatment number four, the PA said, "OK, you have some textural changes" which in layman's term means the petal on my left (the one that is going away the fastest) is scarring.  Yes, if you hear, "textural change" that means you're headed to a scar if you're not careful.  I think it's taking more hits and rubbing due to the fact that I sleep on my back.  So, my goal this time around was to sleep on my stomach as much I could.  I figured wear away at the other petal, and maybe they will even out! Additionally, I used more cream on that area than before.

I will post a pic tomorrow of how I am looking.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Pic Problems

I am trying to post some pics of my last treatment, but for some reason they are being flipped.  I guess I will just post them and change them later.

I wanted to post this one, because this is what I seen on day four and thought, "Woohoo, will all this pink and red my treatments are probably over!".

Not quite!  This is really what I am now looking at...more color! However, I think
  some of this color could be due to the bruising.

         This is good shot of those initial blisters, but
          it is also a good way to see how the
   laser really does not harm or puncture the skin.

I will say as far as healing goes that I am starting to itch which means that burned or "black" layer of skin will be ready to come off in a couple to a few days.  I really hope this isn't the start of two week long healing bouts...scary!

4th Treatment Done!!!

Well I had my 4th treatment done on Monday the 18th, so it has been exactly one week.  Usually at this point I am completely healed and done wearing bandages, but not this time.  For this treatment, I heard her say maximum heat at 755 or 752 (I can't remember), but I do remember the increase in pain.  Usually I can't feel a thing, but I did this time...a lot of pain.  It was not unbearable just more than usual.  Well the sensory difference wasn't the only I noticed to be different.  As soon as I took off the first bandage, I noticed a lot of blood, and I had large blisters already forming.  The last treatment I noticed a good reduction in bruising to where I had none that was visible (although I could feel it to the touch), but this time I have bruises equal to the 2nd treatment.  Where it is all around the tattoo, but the marks are not running down my arm as was the case post-treatment number one.  The strange thing is that I do not have any pain to the touch.  It is as if this time the damage to my arm is entirely, versus before where it almost felt as though my muscle was bruised.

I am not sure why I am not healed yet.  I think it probably has more to do with a greater intensity of the lasers than my immune system, but we will have to see.  I will definitely post when I am off the cream!  I feel I am almost at the stage where my skin gets foggy.  I am pretty sure that will happen soon, so looks like I am close.

I will post some pics of how it is looking now as soon as I can edit them. I can't wait to post an after I am healed!  Technically according to my consultation, I am half way done!!! Woohoo!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Progress Pics!!!

Sorry it has been so long since I posted, I won't let that happen again! I had a treatment done on December 3rd, and I was able to get my progress pics up until that point (3 treatments in)! I posted them below!

It's looking good so far, and I am happy with the work of the lasers each time I go. I have been warned that at treatment 5 or 6, which I will be nearing soon, can get depressing as the progress slows, but I am still pleased and happy to be trucking along! My last treatment went just as the others have. The only thing I really notice to be different is the bruising doesn't really show up anymore around the area surrounding the tattoo, but it seems as though I feel pain when I touch the actual tattoo area for many weeks after now. For example, it has been almost a month since my last treatment, and it still hurts to the touch as if there is deep-tissue damage. While I feel my skin is getting used to this, the tissue underneath seems to be wearing tired of getting zapped every six/eight weeks.

One thing I wanted to mention about me personally as it relates to my progress, I have been on immune suppressant drugs from the beginning of these treatments, because I have a "hyper-active" immune system which means I have an autoimmune disorder. So the reason I may be making such good progress is because my immune system is at the ready to destroy anything and everything. This also can complicate my progress, because my skin is slightly worse off or weak than normal tissue. I thought I would mention this, because it obviously has some effect. If things are not going for you perfectly similar to me, perhaps it is because I am not exactly functioning with the usual immune system. And what we know from these pigment targeted lasers is that they break-up the pigment molecules to be small enough for your immune system to cart them off and out. I can't say what difference this translates to, but maybe you can tell me your progress, so we can juxtaposition!

Thanks for the comments! I am glad to hear this is informative for people. My mission was to fill in the blanks of what to really expect when getting lasered, as the clinics just talk about the "minimal pain". I wanted real details, and I hope I am providing that to you! Good luck with your treatments, and let me know how it goes!