Efficacy and Safety of Intense Pulsed Light With a KTP/PDLlike Filter for the Treatment of Facial Telangiectasias

September 2020 | Volume 19 | Issue 9 | Original Article | 844 | Copyright © September 2020

Published online August 24, 2020

Jennifer D. Peterson MD FAAD FAAPa, Daniel P. Friedmann MDb, Kaitlyn Abdo MSc, Zoya Cahana MSc d

aThe Pearl Dermatology, Houston, TX bWestlake Dermatology Clinical Research Center, Westlake Dermatology & Cosmetic Surgery, Austin, TX cLumenis Ltd., Yokneam, Israel dLumenis Ltd., Yokneam, Israel

Background: An intense pulsed light (IPL) narrowband "KTP/PDL-like" filter (525–585 nm) may combine the tolerability of the IPL with the precision of KTP and PDL lasers. This study evaluated the impact of IPL with a KTP/PDL-like filter on telangiectasias.

: This was a single-center, prospective study of 17 subjects with facial telangiectasias and skin types I–III. Three monthly treatments were performed using this specific filter, with follow-up visits at 1, 3, and 6 months. Telangiectasia improvement was assessed by the investigator and subjects using a 5-point scale. Facial photographs and safety assessments were obtained at each visit. Subject discomfort was evaluated using a visual analog scale (VAS) immediately posttreatment, and subject downtime was recorded at each subsequent visit.

: All facial telangiectasias significantly improved. At 1-month follow-up, >50% lesion clearance was noted in 97.1% of facial (n=36) and 85.7% of non-facial (n=7) lesions, with 73% of subjects satisfied or very satisfied. An increase in mean social downtime (0, 2.3, and 3 days) and VAS scores (3.5, 4.5, and 4.8) with treatments 1, 2, and 3, respectively, mirrored a stepwise increase in fluence with subsequent sessions.

: The use of a novel IPL narrowband KTP/PDL-like filter can significantly improve facial and non-facial telangiectasias with minimal downtime.

J Drugs Dermatol. 2020;19(9):844-850. doi:10.36849/JDD.2020.4834


Telangiectasias are small blood vessels, typically measuring 0.1 to 1.0 mm in diameter, which may be of venular, capillary, or arteriolar origin.1,2 Telangiectasias develop secondary to a variety of factors including genetic predisposition, gravity, pregnancy, and trauma1. Commonly referred to as spider veins, telangiectasias can manifest in the lower extremities as well as the face, neck, and trunk.3 These small vessels are largely considered a cosmetic concern, with 92% of adults displaying mild or limited lesions.4

Intense pulsed light (IPL) therapy is one of a number of modalities used for the treatment of these superficial cutaneous vascular lesions.5–7 Due to the theory of selective photothermolysis, photons emitted by an IPL device are specifically absorbed by the chromophore hemoglobin (with absorption peaks at 418, 542, and 577 nm), leading to confined photocoagulation of target vessels that spares the surrounding tissue.2

Potassium titanyl phosphate (KTP) crystal (532 nm) and pulsed-dye lasers (577 nm and 585–595 nm) are commonly used to target vascular oxyhemoglobin and have been reported to be effective in the treatment of facial telangiectasias.8–10 Their relatively short wavelength also minimizes tissue penetration, sparing deeper vessels.11 An innovative IPL narrowband KTP/PDL-like filter (525–585 nm) has recently been developed for use on vascular lesions. We hypothesized that integrating this filter with the IPL may result in more precise telangiectatic clearance as compared to the broader, currently available IPL vascular filters (eg, 530–650/900–1200 nm). The aim of this study was to evaluate the safety and efficacy of using an IPL with a KTP/PDL-like filter for the treatment of facial and non-facial telangiectasias.


Design and Subjects
This was a single-center, prospective, open-label clinical trial approved by the Schulman Institutional Review Board. All of the participants signed an informed consent prior to their enrollment in the study.