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What are some risks of a carbon dioxide laser peel?

Arthur W. Perry, MD
Plastic Surgery
The carbon dioxide laser became popular in 1994 as a high-tech method of wrinkle reduction. Computers shape the high-intensity light energy to patterns of squares, lines, or circles. Like an artist paints with different brushes, the surgeon uses these varying shapes to vaporize different zones of the face. The initial results were dramatic and the laser soared in popularity, but as with so many new technologies, problems and complications arose.

Pigment changes and scarring are common with this laser, and some of these changes do not appear for months or years. The laser was expected to cause fewer pigment problems than deep chemical peeling because the pigment producing cells (melanocytes) were thought to be preserved. Yet over half of patients have lightened skin after the laser.
Straight Talk about Cosmetic Surgery (Yale University Press Health & Wellness)

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Straight Talk about Cosmetic Surgery (Yale University Press Health & Wellness)

The public’s recent exuberance toward cosmetic surgery has spurred an unprecedented demand for appearance-changing procedures. But how can an average consumer discern the hype from solid truth? ...

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.