Laser Hair Removal Burn - Should I Switch to a Yag Laser?

I am a Fitz IV and I've just have just had one session of the diode lightsheer on my chin,lip and neck. I got badly burned on the chin and neck but the practitioner told me that was to be expected, but subsequent lasering will not result in burns. My chin is already scared from years of plucking, should I go ahead with the 8 treatments I have left. If not will I be better off with a Yag as I want the hair OFF my face, any advice will be much appreciated thanks

Doctor Answers 4

Best laser for darker skin types is the 1064 YAG laser; also warning about treating facial hair

Burns are expected?  Don't go back there.  Although the Lightsheer and other laser are approved for darker skin types (up to VI), the 1064 laser is the safest.  It might not be the most efficient laser though.  I've treat type 4's with no problem with the LightSheer Duet, but don't treat higher than that.  Also, keep in mind that if you have a mediterranean heritage, you are at risk to actually increasing the hair density with laser hair removal of the face and neck.  I don't treat in this area in those individuals.  It's called paradoxical hair growth (hypertrichosis).  I believe it is about 15% occurence.  Steven Weiner, MD, Facial Plastic Surgeon

Panama City Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 41 reviews

Burns should not be expected after laser hair removal

A 1064 nm laser (sometimes called YAG) is probably safe in skin type IV people for hair removal.  Lasers with shorter wave lengths are definately more risky and since you have already had a burn, the repeat use of the same laser would be ill need to go to the longer wave length!  Some skin type IV people may get good results and no burn with diodes or Alexandrite laser treatment but they are close to the margin regarding safety.

So, yes, probably best to have the rest of your 8 treatments with the 1064 laser.

Harlow Hollis, MD
Victoria Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

Laser hair removal for Fitzpatrick IV

Are you pigmented or did you develop blisters or raw spots after the laser? If there were blisters or raw spots you might not develop them the next time if the pulse duration of the laser is adjusted, but if you and your doctor consider it appropriate to do again, you should have test spots done prior to embarking on a full treatrment.  Pigmentation can happen with any of the lasers, but less with the NdYag laser. It is safer to use a longer wavelength for some patients' darker skin tone so that it is absorbed deeper in the dermis than being partially absorbed by the pigment in the epidermis where heat can be created.

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 37 reviews

Burned skin is not acceptable during hair removal treatment

You should not be burned during hair removal under any circumstances. It is also not reasonable to expect that you will be completely hair free with this procedure, particularly if your skin is darker and your hair very fine. YAG is the best laser for dark skin, but careful use of an Alexandrite laser works also. But I would not see a practitioner who says that burning your skin is normal and expected again.

Elizabeth Slass Lee, MD
Bay Area Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 54 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.