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  • Copper Vapor Laser Clears Skin Vessels

Photonics Spectra
Aug 1999
Michael Moss

MOSCOW -- The Center for Laser and Plastic Surgery, in conjunction with the P.N. Lebedev Physical Institute, has reported excellent results from the use of copper vapor lasers in the treatment of telangiectasias -- abnormal dilated capillary vessels often visible on the skin. Complete disappearance of telangiectasias was achieved in 90 percent of the facial treatments, and in 65 percent of procedures on lower extremities.

One of the most widespread problems treated by cosmetology today, the condition traditionally has been treated by electronic coagulation, which leaves the skin rougher than it was prior to treatment. Electronic coagulation is also painful, destroys excessive normal tissue and carries a significant risk of scarring.

The Russian researchers have used the laser treatment on 118 patients since 1996. They used a copper vapor laser that was developed at the Lebedev Institute to perform selective laser coagulation as suggested by Harvard University researchers in 1983. Patients were treated with laser radiation of 511 and 578 nm, at a frequency of 12,000 pulses per second for exposure periods of 100 to 300 ms. The average power used was 0.8 to 1.7 W. Coagulation was performed on a 1 x 1-mm grid of points.

Positive results from the laser coagulation could be seen immediately during the procedure, but two to three treatments were typically necessary. This procedure does not normally require an anesthetic, and healing takes three to seven days.

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