Diode Lasers

Diode lasers (800 nm) used for hair removal include:

— LightSheer (Lumenis, Santa Clara, CA)

— SLP 1000 (Palomar Medical Technologies, Lexington, MA)

— MeDioStar (Aesculap-Meditec, Irvine, CA)

Although the myriad diode lasers vary in their delivered energies, spot sizes, pulse duration, and associated cooling devices, they all set a popular standard for efficiency, reliability, and portability.

Because of reduced scattering at the longer 810-nm diode wavelengths, light from the diode laser penetrates more deeply into the skin. At 800 nm, 24% of incident fluence reaches a depth of 3 mm, whereas only 5% reaches the same depth with 700-nm light (Ross et al. 1999). Also, 800-nm energy is 30% less absorbed by melanin than that of the ruby laser, yet the 800-nm wavelength leads to better optical penetration.

In general, the diode laser system has been found to be better tolerated by patients with darker skin types (V-VI) as compared to the ruby laser (Adrian et al. 2000). This is likely due to its longer wavelength, longer pulse width, and associated active cooling.

In a prospective controlled trial, the 810-nm diode laser demonstrated a significant reduction in hair growth (Lou et al. 2000). Overall, clinical studies with the diode laser system have reported variable success rates ranging from 65-75% hair reduction at 3 months after one to two treatments with fluences of 10-40 J/cm2. This was increased to >75% hair reduction in 91% of subjects 8 months after three to four treatments at 40 J/cm2 (Williams et al. 1999). As expected, repeated treatments, generally at 4-week intervals, appears to improve results (Lou et al. 2000).

Beauty for Newbies

Beauty for Newbies

Do you feel like an ugly duckling sometimes? Doesn't it seem like everyone else seems to know the best ways to present themselves, from their hair, to their skin, to their makeup?

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