Page 17 - Lasers and IPLs in Medical/Aesthetic Applications v1.2
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Chapter 1 – Fundamentals of Medical/Aesthetic Lasers and IPLs v1.2
Choosing the parameters is so important!!! How do we do this?
Unfortunately, many suppliers/manufacturers will make all sorts of claims about their equipment and results which simply do not bear any real scrutiny....
When it comes to treatments, many users do not know how to set up their equipment properly. They simply follow the on-screen/pre-set instructions blindly – in most cases this results in under-powered treatments, yielding poor outcomes.
In most situations, the laser/IPL equipment is not properly calibrated. Many users are not even aware of what this actually means!
In many situations, the equipment is not generating the energy outputs that they claim. Consequently, the clinical data recorded by users is inaccurate, at best. Many users don’t appreciate that their laser/IPL output energy ‘degrades’ over time. This is usually because the salesman didn’t inform them of this important point.
Without regular calibration you cannot properly know what your equipment is doing! This will directly affect clinical results, usually negatively.
Skin cooling is absolutely critical for all photothermal treatments – removal of hair, blood vessels, pigmentation etc. In most treatments, most of the applied energy does not do the job we want! Most of it (>95% in hair treatments, >90% in vascular) is absorbed in the dermal tissues/water, raising their temperatures. This is unwanted. It must be mitigated by proper cooling otherwise tissue damage is inevitable.
How does your equipment do this? Many systems have cooling systems built into them to protect the flashlamp. The skin cooling aspect is usually not considered carefully enough by most manufacturers. When applied to skin treatment, many of these cooling systems perform poorly!
Using gel properly. It is quite astounding that some people don’t seem to understand this very simple, yet critically important issue. There are two important cases to consider:
1. If you are using an IPL with a good, integrated skin cooling system then you should use a thin layer (1mm) of room-temperature gel to improve the thermal conduction between the cooling device and the skin surface;
2. If you have an IPL with a poor cooling system (i.e. it is not cold to the touch or heats up rapidly with the number of shots), you must use a ‘thick’ layer (2 to 3mm) of very cold gel to ensure proper skin cooling. We recommend storing the gel in a freezer, removing
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Chapter 1 LEVEL A Fundamentals of Lasers/IPLs
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