Despite the widespread use of lasers for hair removal there is little data published on the incidence of side effects from this treatment. We aimed to generate data on a large number of patients receiving laser hair removal to obtain an accurate assessment of the incidence and type of side effects resulting from treatment. A multicentre prospective study of patients attending for laser hair removal was conducted to determine incidence of side effects in relation to skin type and laser(s) used. Laser hair removal is associated with a low incidence of side effects which are self-limiting in the majority of cases. Highest incidence of side effects was seen in darker skinned patients treated with the long pulsed ruby laser. Laser hair removal is inherently safe. For darker Fitzpatrick skin types the long pulsed Nd:YAG laser is preferred to the ruby laser.
Sean W. Lanigan, Sean W. Lanigan,
"The incidence of side effects after laser hair removal", Proc. SPIE 5610, Laser Florence 2003: A Window on the Laser Medicine World, (10 September 2004); doi: 10.1117/12.584392; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.584392