You may be apprehensive about undergoing cosmetic laser surgery, but laser surgery is a very safe and effective procedure to improve cosmetic imperfections and conceal the signs of aging.
A laser creates a specific tissue reaction depending on the wavelength of laser light it produces. A laser is a device that generates an intense beam of coherent light that can cut, seal or vaporize tissue. Laser energy instantly vaporizes the intracellular water, vaporizing the cells, while leaving the surrounding tissue virtually unaffected.
Laser technology has been helping physicians to safely and effectively treat patients for both major surgical procedures and minor cosmetic treatment for more than 20 years. The technology is well proven and well documented.
Because we can precisely control the laser, only a thin layer of tissue is affected, leaving the surrounding areas unaffected.
A laser is ideal for a wide variety of cosmetic procedures. Some of these include laser re-surfacing, photorejuvenation, sun spot removal as well as many other specialized cosmetic surgery procedures.
During cosmetic surgery, laser energy seals nerve endings as it moves through tissue. As a result, the patient feels less pain post-operatively.
Laser energy seals small blood vessels as it cuts. When defocused, the laser becomes an effective coagulation device. Not only does the hemostatic cutting benefit the patient, it provides a clear, dry surgical field for the surgeon. Without bleeders continually obstructing the field, the overall procedure time may be decreased, and the visualization of the anatomy is unsurpassed.
Laser energy seals lymphatic vessels. Additionally, because only a beam of invisible light contacts the tissue, there is no bruising or tearing of tissue. This reduced tissue trauma minimizes inflammatory responses, reducing swelling.
Decreased bleeding, swelling, and pain means the patient can return to normal activity and the home environment faster. This provides benefits for the patient.
The unique ability of a laser to vaporize (ablate or "erase") tissue sets it apart from any other surgical tool, even other lasers. With the proper tips and power settings, lasers can be used to precisely remove tissue layer by layer.
Reduced risk of infection after cosmetic laser surgery – The laser sterilizes as it “cuts” killing bacteria that cause infection.
Q: What is the StarLux IPL Laser System?
A: The StarLux IPL laser system is a device that produces an intense, but gentle burst of light that is especially optimized to treat a particular target lesion in the skin. The light is absorbed only by the target lesion being treated and passes harmlessly through the surrounding skin.
Q: What Kinds of Conditions are Treated with the StarLux IPL Laser System?
A: The clinical names for the most commonly treated conditions are: rosacea, telangiectasias or spider veins, port-wine stains, strawberry hemangiomas, sun spots, photoaging, and even some stretch marks and acne scarring. Several of these conditions are made up of abnormal blood vessels in the skin. They vary, however, in severity. Rosacea is a condition which produces small blood vessels and flushing on the face. It is also associated with adult acne. It typically worsens with age and intensifies when someone is exercising or drinking a hot beverage. Telangiectasias usually involve single vessels and are often harmless; whereas port-wine stains involve several vessels, tend to grow with the patient, darken in color, and never go away if left untreated. Hemangiomas grow very rapidly and if not treated, may impair the function of an important organ.
Q: Can Lasers be used to Remove Varicose Veins?
A: Several laser or laser-like systems are now available to safely remove varicose veins on the legs. However, most laser systems do not have the versatility to be effective for larger veins. One system, the StarLux Laser System, can be used to treat both large and small veins on the legs. This laser system also treats varicose and spider veins by using light which is absorbed preferentially by the veins while passing harmlessly through the surrounding skin. This light heats up the vein, eventually causing its destruction.
Q: What is a Photofacial/Photorejuvenation?
A: A Photofacial is a recently developed approach to actually rejuvenate the skin on the face, neck, chest, hands, and arms. The cosmetic laser surgery treatment effectively improves facial redness and flushing, as well as the visible signs of sun damage and aging. The benefits of Photofacial treatments are consistent, visible improvement in the skin with no downtime and minimal discomfort. Treatments can reduce redness and flushing, freckling and irregular pigmentation and even some fine wrinkling. Patients have noted smoother skin and reduced pores. The end result of Photofacial treatments is smoother, healthier, and younger-appearing skin. Also, Photofacial treatments can be used in conjunction with a chemical peel or microdermabrasion to enhance the results of these procedures.
Q: Can lasers be used to remove moles or tattoos?
A: Laser systems are available which can safely remove moles, tattoos or other pigmented lesions without causing scars or skin textural changes. The light is absorbed only by the target lesion and safely passes through the surrounding skin.
Q: Can lasers be used to remove scars?
A: Lasers cannot actually remove scar tissue, but they can improve the general appearance of a scar. Whether the redness of a scar needs to be removed or the thickness of a hypertophic or raised scar needs to be reduced, lasers are available to reduce the unsightly look of a scar by blending it with the surrounding skin.
Q: How safe is laser treatment?
A: In the hands of a properly qualified and trained physician, the laser treatment is safe. Since the laser light is not in the x-ray or ultraviolet range. The common fears of skin cancer or skin changes are unfounded and incorrect. Lasers are even safe to use on children.
Q: Does the laser hurt?
A: There may be minor discomfort much like the snapping of a small rubberband against your skin, followed by a feeling similar to a mild sunburn. Most patients find this quite tolerable without any anesthesia, though some children may require a local anesthetic. The resurfacing laser requires the use of a local anesthetic which makes the skin much less sensitive to pain.
Q: Is this a single treatment or a course of treatments?
A: Most patients with port-wine stains and hemangiomas have experienced a satisfactory lightening response from the laser treatment; however, several laser sessions (usually 8-10) are needed. Patients with spider veins on the face experience excellent results after only 2 or 3 treatments. Patients with tattoos usually require several treatment sessions, but smaller pigmented lesions, such as age spots and moles, can successfully be removed with as few as 1 to 2 treatments. Lux 1540 Fractional laser treatments require 4-6 treatments usually performed every 2-4 weeks. Photorejuvenation treatments require 4-5 treatments for optimal results. Resurfacing laser treatment is usually performed once with subsequent treatment sessions 6 to 12 months later, if needed.
Q: Are there any side effects?
A: Treatments should lead to complete disappearance of selected target lesions without scarring. Side effects are very rare, but as with any procedure, the skill of the laser surgeon is paramount. Occasionally, however, patients may encounter a temporary brown discoloration of the skin for some weeks after treatment.
Q: What is Intense Pulsed Light?
A: Intense Pulsed Light technology (PhotoRejuvenation) is a treatment breakthrough that can correct a variety of benign skin conditions, such as facial skin imperfections, the signs of aging, birthmarks, unsightly small veins and other blemishes. It is safe, non-invasive and virtually painless.
Q: How is the PhotoRejuvenation procedure performed?
A: A cold gel is usually applied to the area to be treated, and you will be given dark glasses or goggles to protect your eyes from the bright light. The smooth glass surface of the IPL handpiece is gently applied to your skin and pulses of light are applied. You may feel a slight sting, like the snapping of a rubber band. An anesthetic is seldom required. Treatment is generally administered in a series of procedures.
Q: Why are multiple treatment necessary?
Q: How do other treatments compare with PhotoRejuvenation?
A: By dividing the full program into several treatments--usually about five-- the procedure provides gradual improvement with very low risk--and, it preserves the wonderful "no downtime" feature people appreciate so much
Kovak Laser Institute
A: While there are lasers that treat red spots, other lasers that treat brown spots, and yet others that are for the resurfacing of the skin, no technology provides the long-term improvement of complexion and texture of the IPL PhotoRejuvenation program--with nothing more than the slightest interruption in your busy lifestyle.