Cutting and skin-ablative properties of pulsed mid-infrared laser surgery

J Dermatol Surg Oncol. 1994 Feb;20(2):112-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1524-4725.1994.tb00123.x.

Abstract

Background: Pulsed mid-infrared lasers allow a precise removal of soft tissues with only minimal thermal damage.

Objective: To study the potential dermatosurgical usefulness of currently available systems at different wavelengths (2010-nm Thulium:YAG laser, 2100-nm Holmium:YAG laser, 2790-nm Erbium:YSGG laser, and 2940-nm Erbium:YAG laser) in vivo on pig skin.

Methods: Immediate effects and wound healing of superficial laser-abrasions and incisions were compared with those of identical control lesions produced by dermabrasion, scalpel incisions, or laser surgery performed by a 1060-nm Nd:YAG and a 1060-nm CO2 laser (continuous and superpulsed mode).

Results: Best efficiency and least thermal injury was found for the pulsed Erbium:YAG laser, leading to ablative and incisional lesions comparable to those obtained by dermabrasion or superficial scalpel incisions, respectively.

Conclusion: In contrast to other mid-infrared lasers tested, the 2940-nm Erbium:YAG laser thus provides a potential instrument for future applications in skin surgery, especially when aiming at a careful ablative removal of delicate superficial lesions with maximum sparing of adjacent tissue structures. However, in the purely incisional application mode pulsed mid-infrared lasers, though of potential usefulness in microsurgical indications (eg, surgery of the cornea), do not offer a suggestive alternative to simple scalpel surgery of the skin.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Aluminum Silicates
  • Animals
  • Carbon Dioxide
  • Dermabrasion / instrumentation
  • Dermatologic Surgical Procedures*
  • Epithelium / pathology
  • Erbium
  • Erythema / pathology
  • Granulation Tissue / pathology
  • Holmium
  • Hot Temperature
  • Inflammation
  • Infrared Rays
  • Laser Therapy / instrumentation
  • Laser Therapy / methods*
  • Neodymium
  • Skin / pathology
  • Surgical Instruments
  • Swine
  • Thulium
  • Wound Healing
  • Yttrium

Substances

  • Aluminum Silicates
  • Carbon Dioxide
  • Neodymium
  • Yttrium
  • Erbium
  • Thulium
  • Holmium