Laser surgery for age spots is done by using a laser beam that generates energy to the surface of the skin. As the energy is absorbed by the red blood cells and pigment of the skin, it creates heat at the site of the age spots, causing total destruction of their composition. This is what is effectively known as laser surgery treatment for the removal of age spots. However, as with any laser surgery, there are invariable pros and cons that should be considered before electing to have such a procedure performed.
Pro: Effectiveness of Laser Surgery
Laser surgery treatment has become one of the more effective treatment methods for the removal of age spots, surpassing even cryosurgery and chemical peels. Because the surgery usually provides permanent results, many people with age spots choose laser surgery over other alternative treatment methods. Laser surgery certainly has no guarantees of providing permanent relief, as there is the possibly that new age spots can occur; however, most patients will find laser surgery to be at least semi-permanent and will typically be very satisfied with the results.
Pro: Treatment and Recovery Time
One of the great benefits of laser treatment is that full removal of age spots can usually be done with no more than two 20-minute laser treatment sessions, which prohibits the patient from having to return several times to accomplish total age spot removal.
Most patients report pain from laser surgery to be minimal, but everyone does have a different level of pain tolerance, so pain is more individual than procedure-related. The sensation reported by patients is more like a minor sting than an actual painful sensation. Depending upon the reaction of the skin to the laser, there may be some swelling at the site, but this usually only lasts for about two hours; although, it can last for up to two days.
Con: Risk of Herpes Infection
Most patients are not aware of the possibility of a herpes infection after laser surgery, but the possibility is very real. A herpes infection usually only occurs in patients that already have an active or dormant case of the herpes virus. Some patients may not be aware that they are infected with the virus, but three to four weeks after their laser surgery, they notice sores reminiscent of the herpes virus. Because the laser causes changes at the surface of the skin, the potential for a herpes outbreak exists.
Con: The Price Tag
There is no doubt that the phrase “laser surgery” carries a hefty price tag. In fact, most people know that it doesn’t really matter what type of laser surgery is being performed, they just know that it is going to be expensive. The overall cost of the surgery will depend on several factors: the geographical area in which you live, the size of the site being worked on, and how many treatments will be needed. Some surgeons may charge a fee of approximately $100 per area of treatment per treatment session, while others may charge a flat-fee ranging from $1,600 and up for total body laser surgery removal of age spots.
The cost of laser surgery is often the largest deterrent for patient’s seeking removal of age spots. However, because the surgery has a reputation for being extremely successful, many patients are willing to overlook the price tag.