Dr. Mrs. Nirved Jain – Lasers Specialist
Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation (LASER) produces an intense beam of light of particular wavelength with insignificant dispersion over a short distance. This high-energy beam of light can be used to selectively transfer its energy into tissue to treat the skin. This property of a LASER beam is utilized in dermatology to treat various skin disorders or for aesthetic purposes.
For several years lasers of many types have been used for cosmetic surgery procedures. The use of lasers in medicine is complex, so Dr. Mrs. Nirved Jain will decide if a laser is appropriate, and which laser is best for providing the optimum results.
Following are the types of laser:
1. CO2 laser: The CO2 laser produces a beam of infrared light with the principal wavelength bands centering around 9.4 and 10.6 micrometers. CO2 lasers are also very useful in surgical procedures because water (which makes up most biological tissue) absorbs this frequency of light very well. Some examples of medical uses are laser surgery, skin resurfacing (“laser facelifts”), and dermabrasion.
2. IPL: Intense pulsed light (IPL) is a technology aimed at producing light of high intensity during a very short period of time. In this technique, the focused, broad-spectrum light is applied to the surface of the skin by way of either a hand-held wand or an articulated arm. This light travels through the skin until it strikes the hair shafts or the bulb (root) of the hair. The bulb is usually where the highest concentration of melanin is located, as opposed to the rest of the hair shaft. As the light is converted to heat energy, the bulb and most of the hair shaft are instantly vaporized.
3. Q switched Nd YAG: Neo dynamium – Yttrium Aluminum Garnet laser’ (Nd YAG laser) is a versatile laser. It has a wave length of 1064 nm and has the capability to reach deeper layers of skin tissue. In Q – switched mode Nd YAG produces two wavelengths, one in the infrared range (1064nm), this is used for blue tattoos, deep (professional) tattoos and dermal pigmented lesions. Second is 532nm which is useful for superficial brown lesions,solar lentigenes,freckles and red / orange tattoos. Pigment removal is done by rapid short pulsed laser beams.
4. Holmium YAG: Holmium YAG laser is a versatile surgical laser that combines the cutting capabilites of the Carbon Dioxide Laser with the coagulation properties of the Neodymium YAG Laser.
Q- In which conditions is a laser treatment mostly used?
Laser beam treatment can be used for various cosmetic surgery procedures like Hair removal, Moles & Nevi removal, Tattoos removal, Skin Resurfacing, treating scars and acne, birthmarks removal and for reducing age spots. Some procedures where CO2 lasers are most useful are described in detail as under:
1. Port-wine Stain: Port wine stain is a capillary vascular malformation that is characterized by a pink, red or purple colored stain on some part on the skin of the person suffering from this disorder. These stains are usually present from the birth but are not hereditary in nature. These are best treated by a combination of pigment lasers such as IPL and Q switched NdYag. Eight to ten sessions are required normally at an interval of 3 to 6 weeks.
2. Moles & Nevi: Scientifically known as melanocytic naevi, moles are small skin lesions that are usually brown. They are a collection of cells called melanocytes, which produce the pigment (colour) in your skin. Moles are usually circular or oval-shaped. They may be present at birth, but most appear later. Moles can be successfully treated using the CO2 laser, although depending on each individual case, more than one attempt may be required before achieving optimum results.
3. Warts: Warts are small, usually painless growths on the skin caused by a virus called human papillomavirus (HPV). They are generally harmless. However, warts can be disfiguring and embarrassing, and occasionally they itch or hurt (particularly on the feet). CO2 laser beams are used to permanently remove warts from the affected areas.
4. Freckles: Freckles are little brown colored spots on the skin which are caused by over-exposure to the sunlight. When the sunrays damage pigment producing element melanocytes freckles appear on the skin. Freckles are generally more visible on people with light complexion as opposed to darker ones. CO2 laser beams are used to treat this condition and bring back the skin color to normal. Sometimes Q switched NdYag is more effective then CO2 lasers for treating freckles.
5. Melasma: Melasma is a common skin disorder where brown to gray-brown patches start to appear on the skin due to over exposure of the sunlight. It appears mostly on the cheeks, bridge of the nose, forehead, chin and above the upper lip. However it may appear on other parts of body which get exposed to sun like neck and forearms. Dr. Jain uses Q switched NdYag lasers for removing the patches from the skin bringing it back to normal color.
6. Under Eye Dark Circles: As their name suggests these are annoying dark colored circles under the eyes of the patient. These areas under the human eye may start to appear dark in color at any age and may last for a long time unless corrective measures are taken. CO2 lasers are very effective in completely removing the darkness of the affected areas and bringing the natural color back.
7. Hyper pigmentation: Hyper pigmentation is a common, usually harmless skin disorder in which patches of skin become darker in color than the normal surrounding skin. This darkening occurs when an excess of melanin, the brown pigment that produces normal skin color, forms deposits in the skin. A combination of Q switched nd Yag and CO2 lasers are used to cure this deposition of melanin and bring back the skin color to normal.
Q- Is there much pain after a laser treatment?
Most of the patients feel mild discomfort after the laser procedure; however some may also feel little bit of pain. If such a thing happens your surgeon will advise adequate medication. However, most patients generally say that their skin feels “sore” or “irritated” which heals by itself over time.
How long does the effect of a laser treatment last?
There is no type of skin treatment that can stop the aging process, and so no treatment is permanent. But there is permanence in a sense, and that is that the skin will always appear tighter than it would have at the same age without treatment.
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