Which skin conditions can be treated with vascular lasers and what types of lasers are used?
Vascular lasers such as the pulsed dye laser (pictured) are used for the following indications:-
- Rosacea and facial redness
- Spider veins (telangiectasias)
- Port-wine stains
- Spider naevus
- Cherry angiomas
- Venous lakes
- Poikiloderma of Civatte
I will most commonly use Pulsed-Dye Lasers. These emit a yellow light, which is absorbed by the haemoglobin in blood vessels. This light energy causes the blood vessels to coagulate and eventually be reabsorbed by the body. PDLs are particularly effective for treating rosacea, facial redness, spider veins, and port-wine stains.
Long-Pulsed Nd:YAG Lasers: Nd:YAG lasers have a longer wavelength, allowing them to penetrate deeper into the skin. This makes them suitable for treating larger blood vessels, such as those found in varicose veins and deeper vascular lesions, however as they target larger blood vessels, they are associated with a slightly higher risk of complications such as scarring.
Facial redness and blood vessels can also be treated with Intense Pulsed Light.
Advantages of vascular laser treatments
- Minimally invasive: Lasers offer precise targeting of blood vessels, minimizing damage to surrounding tissue and reducing the risk of scarring.
- Quick: Vascular laser treatments are typically quick, with many procedures taking less than an hour to complete.
- Minimal downtime: Most patients can return to their normal activities soon after treatment, with only minor side effects, such as temporary redness or swelling.
- Long-lasting results: Vascular laser treatments often provide long-lasting improvement in the appearance of vascular skin conditions.
Risks and Side Effects
As with any medical procedure, vascular laser treatments do carry some risks and potential side effects:
- Pain or discomfort: Some patients may experience mild pain or discomfort during the treatment, which can be managed with topical anesthetics or cooling devices.
- Redness and swelling: Temporary redness and swelling may occur after treatment but typically resolve within a few days.
- Pigmentary change: In rare cases, vascular laser treatments may cause temporary or permanent changes in skin pigmentation, particularly in individuals with darker skin tones.
- Scarring: Although rare, scarring is a potential risk of vascular laser treatment, particularly if the skin's outer layers are damaged during the procedure.
- Incomplete clearance: Some vascular lesions may require multiple treatment sessions for optimal results, and in some cases, complete clearance may not be achievable.
Consent Form Vascular Laser
What is pulsed dye laser treatment?
How does pulsed dye laser treatment work?
Is pulsed dye laser treatment painful?
How many treatments are needed?
What should I expect during the recovery period?
Are there any risks or side effects associated with pulsed dye laser treatment?
How long do the results of pulsed dye laser treatment last?
Is pulsed dye laser treatment suitable for all skin types?
Can pulsed dye laser treatment be combined with other treatments?
How much does pulsed dye laser treatment cost?