Laser Hair Removal
Laser Hair Removal
Laser hair removal was performed experimentally for about 20 years before it became commercially available in the mid-1990s.One of the first published articles describing laser hair removal was authored by the group at Massachusetts General Hospital in 1998. The efficacy of laser hair removal is now generally accepted in the dermatology community, and laser hair removal is widely practiced in clinics, and even in homes using devices designed and priced for consumer self-treatment. Many reviews of laser hair removal methods, safety, and efficacy have been published in the dermatology literature. 5 basic systems for intense pulsed light hair removal and laser hair removal currently available:
•Ultimate Light™ or Pulsed Light (IPL)
•Nd: Yag Laser
Hair removal lasers are effective treatment for pseudofolliculitis barbae, commonly called “ingrown hairs” or “shaving bumps”. They have recently been reported as helpful treatment for pilonidal cysts, since they eliminate the ingrown hairs that produce the troublesome foreign body reactions in this malady
Some normal side effects may occur after laser hair removal treatments, including itching, pink skin, redness, and swelling around the treatment area or swelling of the follicles (follicular edema). These side effects rarely last more than two or three days. The two most common serious side effects are acne and skin discoloration.
Some level of pain should also be expected during treatments. Numbing creams are available at most clinics, sometimes for an additional cost. Some numbing creams are available over the counter. Use of strong numbing creams over large skin areas being treated at one time must be avoided, as this has seriously harmed, and even killed, patients. Typically, the cream should be applied about 30 minutes before the procedure. Icing the area after the treatment helps relieve the side effects faster. Ibrahimi and Kilmer reported a study of a novel device of diode handpiece with a large spot size which used vacuum-assisted suction to reduce the level of pain associated with laser treatment. 
Unwanted side effects such as hypo- or hyper-pigmentation or, in extreme cases, burning of the skin call for an adjustment in laser selection or settings. Risks include the chance of burning the skin or discoloration of the skin, hypopigmentation (white spots), flare of acne, swelling around the hair follicle (considered a normal reaction), scab formation, purpura, and infection. These risks can be reduced by treatment with an appropriate laser type used at appropriate settings for the individual’s skin type and treatment area.
University/College: University of California
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Date: 19 October 2016
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