The main contributors to acne are the excess oil produced in the sebaceous glands of the skin and a particular skin microbe called Propionibacterium acnes which invades the glands and turns the oil into pus. Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) therapy can be used as an effective acne treatment to treat acne-prone skin.
IPL uses filtered light of a specific waveform (colour) that is selectively absorbed by the inflamed acne areas. The treatment creates heat in the acne lesions to control the microbes and reduce oil production in the sebaceous glands. For treating more severe acne, this effect can be magnified many times over by using a specific photosensitising agent called ALA (amino laevulinic acid) applied to the skin. The pulsed light activates ALA and causes it to release strong chemicals called free radicals that selectively destroy the bacterial cells and dry up the oil glands.