Potential Risks and Complications of Laser Light Therapy

Laser Light Therapy may be used in patients that are looking to reduce early signs of aging such as liver spots and fine wrinkles, but may also be a solution for patients that have acne or other skin imperfections. As with any other type of treatment, Laser Light Therapy may have some potential risks and complications.

Skin Burns

Even if rare, laser burns may happen during Laser Light Therapy treatment. This is mostly due to an inadequate use of the laser beams. The laser beams are typically safe for human skin, but if their wavelength is not adjusted to the skin tone of the patient, skin burns may occur. Patients that have tanned or dark skin tones are more likely to suffer from laser burns. Patients should not have a tan when Laser Light Therapy treatment is applied and should avoid sun and artificial UV light exposure four to six weeks prior to the treatment.

Skin Scarring

Skin scarring may be a direct result of laser burns. If burns occur, these can leave permanent scars. Scarring and burns may be prevented if the specialist applying the laser treatment is experienced in Laser Light Therapy.

Hyper or Hypopigmentation

The laser beams may affect the color of the skin and there may be discolored skin patches or patches of a darker color. In some patients, the hyper or hypopigmentation is only subtle. This may occur only in some patients and is typically a temporary problem.

Patients will be advised to avoid tanning prior to the Laser Light Therapy treatment, as a tanned skin can be more prone to hyper or hypopigmentation. Artificial tanning may have the same effects, so it should also be avoided.

Acne Flare Ups

In rare cases, the use of laser beams may activate the sebaceous glands and result in an acne flare-up. This is difficult to predict and may occur mostly in patients that have oily skin. For this reason, patients with acne may prefer other types of treatment.

Eye Damage

When Laser Light Therapy is used on the facial area, there is the risk of injuries to the eye. The laser beams may easily cause eye damage, especially if the eyes are not protected by goggles. Goggles should be suitable to the wavelength of lasers used to provide full protection.

Laser Light Therapy may only be applied if the patient is not on a treatment with retinoids. In fact, this type of treatment should be stopped six months prior to a laser treatment, to minimize the risks and complications of the procedure.

It’s imperative to be aware of all these possible risks and complications of Laser Light Therapy and to discuss these in detail with the specialist performing the Laser Light Therapy treatment. Some patients are more exposed to risks than others. The specialist should also establish if the patient is a suitable candidate for Laser Light Therapy.

Have specific questions?

All Article Categories

Before & After Photos

Suggested Doctors

Recently Asked Questions