With more than 7,800 practicing laser dermatology clinics and an additional 2,100 medical spas, lasers are becoming more common as minimally invasive dermatological tools. Current handpieces have fundamental design flaws that present extreme ocular hazards to the practitioner and patient, fail to account for the negative tissue effects that result from laser illumination of skin and are not ergonomically designed with the practitioner in mind. Because there are no alternatives, these flaws are accepted, and this limits treatment efficiency and represents the potential for serious injury.
The principal investigators are developing a laser device accessory that will make procedures safer and more effective and place less strain on practitioners. Their ergonomically designed product functions by emitting laser light directly into the skin through physical contact. This eliminates the risk of serious, irreparable ocular injury that can result from accidental exposure to even just a reflection of the laser beam. Their design also mitigates the undesirable photo-thermal effects at the tissue surface, including carbonization and vaporization followed by layers of coagulation and edema that currently limits laser exposure energies and treatment times and reduces procedural efficacy. Although some newer methods attempt to utilize contact cooling techniques, most techniques are fundamentally incompatible with contemporary light delivery methods.