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Modern medicine harnesses the power and elegance of high tech lasers for specific tasks, useful in treating many skin conditions. Class 4 medical lasers are very effective, but require careful use to achieve good results without causing harm. The Skin and Vein Clinic in Whangarei uses trained personnel in the Laser Suite to safely eliminate many unwanted skin problems. Eye protection for staff and patients is mandatory. You should come in with clean skin for treatment, removing makeup and sunscreens, etc. pre-treatment onsite.
Lasers produce high intensity light emission from a laser source, with specific characteristics. The lightbeam is attracted to a target, or “chromophore, and brief intense heat effects destroy selected target tissue or pigment. Repeated treatments may be needed, at intervals of several weeks. There can be a very brief stinging sensation during laser action, and local anaesthetic creams or infiltration in some cases can make the treatment acceptably comfortable.
At your initial consultation, a laser tester may be advised. This is performed to assess your sensitivity to the laser power. Some patients will develop redness or swelling, so the laser power is titrated against your skin type.
Lasers are effective in removing unwanted tattoos, hair, pigment, red veins and to rejuvenate aged or sundamaged skin. Scars can be smoothed out, and acne controlled. Many benign tags and some moles can be removed, as well as some superficial skin cancers. Sunspots and many non-pigmented skin cancer lesions can be safely cleared with nonsurgical treatment involving lasers such as ablative CO2 lasers or undergoing photodynamic therapy, PDT.
Varicose veins are best treated by laser closure from within, called endovenous laser ablation, EVLA, using local tumescent anaesthesia. Fine spider veins, spider naevi, red Campbell de Morgan spots, and birthmarks are usually best treated with a vascular skin laser.