The Cutera Excel V is a dual wave length laser system which can be used with two interchangeable handpieces. Excel V laser is used for the treatment of vascular lesions and pigmented skin lesions using the action of a laser light beam. The laser provides consistent results in a non-traumatic, and effective way. In most cases treatment is performed without anaesthesia.
WHAT SORT OF LESIONS MAY BE TREATED WITH THE COOLVIEW HANDPIECE?
Abnormally large or numerous blood vessels located directly under the surface of the skin. These may be visible through the skin or result in a red appearance of the skin.
Birthmarks – port wine stains
Telangiectasia – facial spider veins caused by dilation of capillaries
Cherry Angiomas – slightly raised, red lesions
Spider Angiomas – slightly raised, red spider-like lesions
Rosacea – red facial lesions around the nose and cheeks causing a sunburnt appearance.
Leg Veins – reticular and spider veins
Melanin is the dark pigment present in skin and is produced by melanocytes. When there is an abundance of melanocytes pigmented lesions occurring, freckles, brown age spots and moles form.
Lentigines – a flat, brown spot on the skin – frequent sun exposure.
Keratoses – slightly elevated pigmented spots often on back and hands.
Freckles – a brownish spot on the skin – common in fair-skinned people.
Dermatosis Papulosis Nigra – small, black marks seen mainly on people of Asian or African descent.
HOW DOES LASER WORK?
A laser generates a beam of intense, concentrated light. This beam of light brings energy to a specific site, through a handpiece connected to the laser. The laser light is absorbed by the oxygen-carrying red blood cells and melanin pigment in the skin causing destruction by heat of unwanted cells whilst leaving healthy cells intact.
Treatment varies depending upon patients and the areas to be treated. You will be asked to wear protective eyewear to protect your eyes from the intense beam of laser light. You will be placed in a reclined position depending on the location of treatment. The Doctor will use a handpiece to direct a beam of laser light to the specific area. The handpiece has a sapphire cooling window to reduce discomfort and minimize skin surface reaction. A stinging sensation will be experienced during the laser treatment. In some cases an anaesthetic cream may be applied beforehand.
WHAT WILL I FEEL AFTER LASER?
Some patients report a slight stinging sensation or some redness – this usually goes away in 2-4 hours. There may be some swelling which may last 1-2 days. If crusting occurs this may last up to one week. You must stay out of the sun during the healing process.
Your Doctor may prescribe an antibacterial ointment to use on the treated area for a few days. Final results should be evident within 10-14 days for vascular lesions and within 2-3 weeks for pigmented lesions.
WHAT ARE THE ADVANTAGES OF LASER TREATMENT?
Treatment – minimal care before and after treatment.
Performed in the Doctor’s office and only takes a short time.
Consistent outcome – minimal discolouration, swelling or complications. Occasionally, patients with rosacea may get more pronounced swelling.
Comprehensive treatment – multiple conditions can be treated, often performed without anaesthesia.
WHAT ARE THE POTENTIAL COMPLICATIONS?
Any procedure may result in an adverse outcome. Occasionally conditions may not respond to treatment or require multiple treatments. Redness of the treated area can occur, irritation, localized swelling, discomfort or tenderness, infection, pigmentation change and scarring which may be permanent if it occurs.
Dr Russell Hills is an experienced cosmetic dermatologist based in Brisbane, Australia and is a member of the Academy of Facial Plastic Surgery. Dr Hills also has extensive experience in MOHS surgery for skin cancer removal, and is the principal Dermatologist at Aesthetix.
Dr Hills regularly lectures on cosmetic and laser surgery and skin cancer removal, and has numerous publications on these topics. He is a member of a number of Australian and American medical associations, and attends local and international conferences to stay up-to-date with the latest approaches in cosmetic medicine.