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Laser for Hair Removal

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Lasers, Lights and Other Technologies

Abstract

Lasers for the removal of unwanted hair, using selective destruction of the hair follicle without damage to adjacent tissues, are a common procedure in the dermatologist’s practice.

The diode laser, neodymium-doped yttrium-aluminum-garnet (Nd:YAG) laser, ruby laser, alexandrite laser, and intense pulsed light are some of the technologies available today for long-term hair removal. Proper selection of the wavelength, pulse duration, and fluence is crucial to the success and safety of the procedure.

Treatment performed with laser and other light sources usually produces a complete temporary hair loss, followed by partial permanent hair removal.

The patient’s phototype and hair color must be carefully evaluated as well as the presence of tanning, since the presence of epidermal melanin increases the risks and decreases the effectiveness of the procedure. The ideal patient for laser or IPL hair removal is the one with low skin phototype and dark hair.

There is currently no consensus regarding the number of treatment sessions and the interval between them. Its determination must take into consideration the individual characteristics of hair growth, the body area, and the type of light source used.

The most common complications are hyper- or hypopigmentation, which is temporary in most cases, but there are reports of permanent changes. In general, laser treatment for hair removal is considered to be both safe and effective.

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Correspondence to Patricia Ormiga .

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Ormiga, P., Aguinaga, F. (2016). Laser for Hair Removal. In: Issa, M., Tamura, B. (eds) Lasers, Lights and Other Technologies. Clinical Approaches and Procedures in Cosmetic Dermatology. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-20251-8_16-1

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-20251-8_16-1

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