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Laser and Light Devices Stay On Top for the Fourth Year

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Woman ready for a laser

Laser, light and energy-based devices remain the top cosmetic procedure category for the fourth year in a row, new survey results show. Members of the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery (ASDS) performed more than 2.7 million procedures using lasers, lights and energy-based devices in 2014, according to the ASDS Survey on Dermatologic Procedures.

Patients continue to recognize that these procedures are effective and convenient, said ASDS President George J. Hruza, MD, MBA. “Lasers and other energy sources have become very good for many indications with minimal downtime and minimal pain associated with the procedures,” Hruza said. “Hair removal, tattoo removal, sun-damage repair, wrinkle and scar improvement, brown spot and broken blood vessel fading, fat reductions and skin tightening are all indications that can be effectively treated with laser and energy sources.”

The top treatment areas of the more than a dozen cosmetic uses in 2014 were the following.

Hair removal.  633,000

Facial redness. 428,000

Photo rejuvenation. 329,000

Photodynamic therapy.  311,000

Age spots. 224,000

One of the fastest-growing procedures is tattoo removal (109,641 performed in 2014), up 74% since 2012. The development of picosecond lasers that are more effective and less painful than previous, nanosecond laser technology has prompted many consumers to give tattoo removal procedures more serious consideration, according to Hruza.

Of course, any esthetician or physician using laser or light devices should be appropriately trained in the physics, safety and surgical techniques involved in the use of energy devices.

For more on laser and light device safety, stay tuned for Terri Wojak's article in the August issue of Skin Inc.