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Laser Scar Removal Injury Compensation Claims
Scarring to regularly exposed areas of the body can cause extreme self-consciousness and a perception of deformity in both women and men. Laser scar removal provides a fast, generally safe and effective solution to this problem, where previously treatments had only minimally beneficial effects. Laser scar removal is often chosen to eliminate acne scars, which patients may have suffered with for many years, or to treat scars derived from surgery or viruses, and those sustained in accidents and fights. Professionals claim that laser surgery can reduce the visibility of scars by up to 80%.
In the case of acne scars, laser surgery serves an important additional function in destroying the bacteria and damaging the oil glands which cause acne. The undeniable benefits of laser scar removal often obscures the fact that laser procedures are highly technical in nature, especially the matching of laser type and beam intensity to individual scar characteristics. The skill of the dermatologist and laser technicians are essential to the success of the procedure, and the choice of clinic is therefore of paramount importance to the prospective patient.
Scarring is caused by an excess or lack of the supply of collagen to a wound during the healing process. Keloid scars are raised scars, resulting from concentrations collagen being formed, and may develop in size and surface area over time. Hypertrophic scars are similar, but will not expand beyond the site of the initial wound and will fade over time. Keloid and hypertrophic scars are generally treated with an intense non-ablative laser (the pulsed dye laser being the most popular) which does not burn off layers of skin, but rather targets underlying layers stimulating correction from the inside out. Acne and skin disease scars are defined as atrophic scars, characterised by small, regular depressions in the skin. These scars are best corrected using ablative lasers (most commonly CO2 and Erb:Yag lasers), that blast off the damaged layers of skin, and warm the dermis layer beneath producing fresh layers of healthy skin. The technology involved in laser scar removal is evolving all the time, and a doctor should be able to explain to a prospective patient the reasons for using a specific type of laser in their particular circumstances.
Though laser scar removal procedures have a high success rate, inevitably there are certain risks and side-effects involved. The laser itself may cause burns and additional scarring if it is beamed the wound site or surrounding areas of healthy skin for fractionally too long. Local anaesthetic is normally administered, and clinics must perform medical checks to ensure the patient does not suffer an adverse reaction. There are also a number of 'contra-indications' which make laser scar removal unsuitable, including skin diseases such as dermatitis and psoriasis. Those taking certain types of acne medication also face a higher risk of complications developing. There is a moderate risk of either hyperpigmentation (darkening of skin) or hypopigmentation (lightening of skin) resulting from laser scar removal treatments. Patients should be advised by clinics of the dangers posed by sun exposure in this context, which may worsen skin pigmentation changes.
Legal Responsibilities Of Laser Scar Removal Clinics
Those opting for laser scar removal treatments have a basic right to expect that it will be performed in a reasonably competent manner. For the standard of care to be judged reasonable it should be the same as that which one would expect from other professionals in the field. Clinics should carry out skin patch tests and a medical consultation with clients, to determine any possible negative reactions, and assess the laser type and settings to be used. Premises should be properly ventilated, hygienic and well-equipped in case of emergency. If you have been injured by a laser scar removal treatment you should contact a specialist firm of solicitors with experience in these types of cases. Not only will you receive free confidential advice, you will also be supported and protected every step of the way towards a successful conclusion.
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