Dual-Mode Erbium-YAG Laser Skin Resurfacing

  • John B. Holds


Ablative laser skin resurfacing may give dramatic benefit in skin rejuvenation, although at the cost of significant risk, side effects, and healing time. Two lasers with significantly different physical effects but similar final surgical results are employed: short-pulse CO2 and erbium-YAG (Er:YAG) lasers (Table 139.1). The absorption coefficient of water and tissue at the near infrared wavelength of the Er:YAG laser is 18 times that of the CO2 laser. For this reason, the Er:YAG laser at a short pulse-width is almost purely ablative. The longer pulse duration and greater thermal damage in Table 139.1 for Er:YAG refers to lasers with a long pulse width coagulative mode. Moderate to deep chemical peels and dermabrasion can achieve results comparable to laser skin resurfacing in smoothing the skin and eradicating rhytids, with some similarities in healing.
Table 139.1

Comparison of Physical Properties of Er:YAG and CO2 Lasers


Facial Laser Skin Rejuve Pass Ablation Tumescent Anesthesia Erative Photograph 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • John B. Holds
    • 1
  1. 1.Departments of Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology-Head and Neck SurgerySaint Louis UniversitySt. LouisUSA

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