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May 1982

Lasers in Dermatology

Arch Dermatol. 1982;118(5):293-295. doi:10.1001/archderm.1982.01650170007011

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During the last 20 years, lasers have become increasingly accepted as instruments of great usefulness for dermatologic therapy and photobiologic investigation. The intense laser light is able to alter a variety of cutaneous tissues by thermal injury in either a nonspecific but highly controlled manner or with a high degree of specificity. The optical characteristics of skin may make possible the intriguing goal of treating specific intracutaneous targets with a light that passes intact through unaffected and unaltered viable cutaneous tissues.

PROPERTIES OF LASER LIGHT  The laser, an acronym for light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation, was first successfully operated in 1960. This instrument is a device for producing orderly beams of light. Laser radiation is coherent, both temporally and spatially. It is monochromatic and thought of as temporally coherent because all of the waves retain their same phase relationships. This permits selective optical absorption and consequent selective tissue

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