Why Can't a Laser Machine Be Used in Rhinoplasty to Precisely Cut the Bone and Cartiladge?

It seems that if the exact measurements were given to the machine, the laser could etch away with perfect symmetry. Why couldn't this be used?

Doctor Answers 5

Lasers in Rhinoplasty

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I have actually pondered myself the same question you ask.  There are technical issues. For example a laser that cuts through bone might not do as well through cartilage. Blood that inevitably accumulates would also interfere with the function of the laser.  But perhaps most importantly, the laser is nothing more than a high tech tool, and as such still relies on the judgement and skill of the user.  One must take into consideration the thickness and elasticity of the overlying skin as well as the effect of a maneuver on the remaining components of the nose.  Thus one can not "dial in" a number and walk away and leave it at that.

Milwaukee Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 32 reviews

Laser for rhinoplasty

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A laser in the hand of the surgeon does not necessarily guarantee symmetry. The day has not yet come where your anatomic dimensions and surgical plan be input into a computer and carried out by robotics, to insure an exact result. When it does occur, there will still be the healing, physical  and patient factors that will be outside of the medical personnels control.

Marc Schneider, MD
Fort Myers Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Laser Rhinoplasty

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With current laser technology there is no demonstratable advantage to using a laser and it may increase the risks of surgery.  Of course this can change in the future with technological advances.

Paul Carniol, MD
Summit Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Lasers in Plastic Surgery- More hype, less reality.

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Lasers are overly hyped when it comes to their role in art of plastic surgery.  Lasiks depend upon geometry and math thus computers behind laser machine can deliver math and geometrical outcomes in Lasik surgery.  Plastic surgery is all art.  Unfortunately, some surgeons use laser hype to mislead susceptible patients into belief that it is better.  Laser has no role in precise cutting needed in plastic surgery.  Thin edge of steel blade delivers more precision and less trauma.

Vasdev Rai, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

The laser for rhinoplasty

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The laser is very appealing to patients as they perceive the machine as high tech and state of the art. Currently, the laser has not proven to be more accurate or effective in rhinoplasty. Artistry, skill, and good judgment in rhinoplasty still win out over technology.

Best of luck,


Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 44 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.