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April 2015

Macular Injury With Rapid Onset of Choroidal Neovascularization From Laser Epilation

Author Affiliations
  • 1Institute of Vision and Optics, School of Health Sciences, University of Crete, Crete, Greece
  • 2First Department, Opthalmiatreion Eye Hospital of Athens, Athens, Greece
JAMA Ophthalmol. 2015;133(4):488-490. doi:10.1001/jamaophthalmol.2014.5838

Lasers used for laser hair removal operate between 700 and 1000 nm to be absorbed by the hair follicle melanin and destroy it by thermal injury. Consequently, there is a theoretical risk of retinal damage due to the high melanin concentration in the retinal pigment epithelium. Thus, ocular protection during laser epilation is instructed. So far, there are reports of iris laser thermal injury and uveitis during epilation of eyebrows, but there is no report, to our knowledge, of retinal damage by this procedure.

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