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Safety considerations when getting laser hair removal

Over a decade ago, celebrities were the first to have access to laser hair removal--a treatment designed to permanently remove unwanted body hair. The procedure was expensive and only available in limited facilities. Since that time, however, the market for such treatment has flourished. Laser hair removal centers are popping up all over the country--and treatments are more affordable than ever.

If you hate shaving daily, and waxing makes you cringe, the prospect of permanently removing your body hair with a simple light may sounds like a dream come true. However, like any medical procedure, laser hair removal is not without its risks. In today's post, we offer important safety information on this treatment.

What are the risks?

Many laser hair removal procedures go off without a hitch. However, when things go wrong, it can result in severe burning or scarring. The procedure also rarely leads to infection, and in one case, a patient even died due to the over-application of topical anesthesia.

In addition, laser hair removal is not federally regulated--and states' training and licensing requirements for laser hair removal practitioners vary greatly. Medical malpractice lawsuits against non-physician practitioners have risen steeply in recent years.

The good news

Fortunately, Ohio is ahead of the curve when it comes to laser hair removal. In the Buckeye State, if a physician does not conduct the treatment themselves, only licensed medical professionals or cosmetic therapists may operate the laser--with physician supervision.

This regulation may help reduce the risk of laser treatment mishaps. In addition, here are a few other steps you can take to improve your chances of a successful procedure:

  • Ensure that the clinic conducts an initial assessment to determine whether you're a good candidate for laser hair removal.
  • Make sure the laser practitioner tests the laser on a small, discreet patch of skin--to see how you react--before giving treatment to a larger area.
  • Make sure a physician is on site--and double check that they specialize in the skin (e.g., a dermatologist or plastic surgeon).
  • Research the clinic's online ratings and patient reviews ahead of time.

If you suffer injury due to laser hair removal treatment, be sure to consult with an experienced medical malpractice attorney about your legal recourse.

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