Understanding Cosmetic Laser Surgery

Understanding Cosmetic Laser Surgery

Understanding Cosmetic Laser Surgery

Understanding Cosmetic Laser Surgery

Synopsis

Sunlight and gravity cause facial aging. Lasers enable safe and predictable resurfacing to smooth facial wrinkles as well as surgery to remove aging tissue from eyelids while minimizing bruising. Lasers can also eliminate excess blood vessels and unwanted hair, and erase tattoos without scarring.

Laser surgery must be performed with great precision and care. Ideally, it should provide satisfactory improvement of one's appearance and do so with no adverse side effects. It is a complement to such non-laser surgeries as face-lift.

Understanding Cosmetic Laser Surgery spells out the technology of the laser and its suitability for many cosmetic surgeries. Included in the discussions are the physiology of the skin, the basics of the surgical procedure, the preparation for surgery, a pointing out of risks, and an advisory on the postoperative recovery. This information is presented in clear, jargon-free language that explains how a laser procedure is accomplished without affecting the surrounding skin.

A comprehensive overview that keeps the patient's perspective in mind, Understanding Cosmetic Laser Surgery is for the general reader and for those considering this elective surgical procedure.

This useful, enlightening book written by a practicing professional answers questions patients ask and lets them know what to expect from surgery.

Robert Langdon, a private-practice dermatologist and cosmetic surgeon in Guilford, Connecticut, is a clinical assistant professor of dermatology at the Yale University School of Medicine.

Excerpt

Perhaps you have been considering cosmetic laser surgery. a cosmetic surgical treatment is voluntary and not medically necessary. You must decide if such a treatment is right for you, and you will have to pay for the procedure with your own money. Health insurance does not cover cosmetic procedures. How do you know if a cosmetic laser procedure is worth it? How much improvement can you expect in your appearance? What are the advantages of a laser procedure compared to more traditional surgery? What is the down side of a given procedure? What are the risks, and how do these risks compare to those of alternative treatments? How do you know if a surgeon is qualified and can give you the best possible results?

The purpose of this book is to answer these and other questions about cosmetic laser surgery. Lasers have unique properties unlike any other surgical instruments. in fact, some cosmetic procedures would simply not be possible without a specialized laser. For decades many surgical procedures have been done using traditional instruments but can now be performed with lasers that offer significant advantages to the patient: advantages such as less bleeding or no bleeding at all ([bloodless surgery]), no scarring, much greater speed of treatment, much less pain of treatment so that little if any anesthesia is required, less postoperative swelling, and faster healing and recovery.

How can lasers offer so many advantages? One reason is that there are now many different lasers used for cosmetic purposes. Engineers and scientists have been hard at work developing new, specialized lasers for specific cosmetic applications. To understand why these machines work so well, one must have some understanding of human skin. Many lasers affect a precise component of the skin (usually the structure one hopes to eliminate) and that component only. the laser is designed for the express purpose of eliminating the unwanted skin component—for example, excessive facial blood vessels, pigmented birthmarks or age spots, aged or wrinkled skin, or sagging eyelid skin. However, lasers are not magical, and much . . .

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