Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation
- AGE SPOTS
- BROWN SPOTS
- PORT WINE BIRTHMARKS
- SNORING SPIDER VEINS
- STRETCH MARKS
81 year old patient before and after resurfacing of lip wrinkles.
Laser technology has greatly advanced in recent years and has proven to be a very safe and effective tool for treating the skin’s imperfections. The laser is a device that generates an intense beam of focused light. This light is energy, and when medically applied it can smooth out wrinkles and scars, or fade vascular and pigmented discolorations. Several lasers are used in medicine, each one having special applications.
Brown Spots, Age Spots and Freckles
The Q-Switched Laser is beneficial for the treatment of pigmented lesions as it has the ability to remove most, and sometimes all, of the pigment from brown spots, age spots or freckles (caused by an abnormal excess of melanin, which gives our skin its color), and tattoos (colored dyes). This laser selectively targets pigment and breaks it down into minute particles which are then removed by the body’s natural filtering system. The number of treatments depends on the intensity of the pigmentation and in the case of tattoos, some colors respond better than others. The sensation of the laser treatment has been likened to the snap of a thin rubber band, and after treatment the area will feel similar to a slight sunburn. Typically, any discomfort disappears within a day or two. The area may remain reddened for some weeks, after which the skin returns to its natural smooth coloring and texture. Questions regarding laser use for any skin treatments can be answered during consultation.
One of the most commonly used lasers is the Carbon Dioxide Laser (CO2). This laser is used for skin resurfacing and for making skin incisions. When applied for skin resurfacing it removes or softens wrinkles and scars. The results are similar to a chemical peel in that the laser peels surface layers of the skin, revealing fresh, firmer, younger looking skin. There is less risk of the common side effects that accompany a chemical peel, such as the loss of skin color. Laser skin resurfacing is very popular for treating the area above the lip (lipstick lines) and for smoothing out ‘crow’s feet’ and the fine lines that develop around the eyes.
Spider Veins, Port Wine Birthmarks, Warts, Stretch Marks
The Pulsed Dye Laser emits a yellow beam which targets vascular lesions such as spider veins, port wine birthmarks, rosacea (chronic redness of the skin), and is an effective treatment for the removal of warts. Recently, this laser has been used for the treatment of stretch marks. Results to date show this treatment takes color out of stretch marks, making them less noticeable, though it does not eliminate the texture.