Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"Hair Removal - How does one determine what hair removal laser will work best for them?"
I know there are different kinds of hair removal lasers and the IPL method - how can I tell what type of procedure would work the best for me? I'm a woman of color with dry sensitive skin, and I am worried about hypopigmentation, for what that's worth.
Laser hair removal is a technology that is more and more commonly used. It is usually well tolerated without side effect. However sometimes a condition called post inflammatory hypopigmentation develops. This occurs basically because the skin is 'burned' by the laser and the resulting inflammation causes loss of skin pigment. This occurs most commonly when the laser settings are too strong for the patient's skin color. People with darkly colored skin and hair are at higher risk of this complication because the laser settings that are needed to remove the hair are more intense. There is no way to guarantee that this complication will not occur with you. Your best option is to have a frank conversation with your dermatologist and make sure that your concerns are well expressed and that the choice of laser intensity is thought about carefully. As always the diagnosis and the management of your particular concerns will require a physical examination by your personal physician. Setting up an office visit with your dermatologist is recommended.
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