[Translated article] Laser Treatment of Burn Scars

Tratamiento láser de cicatrices por quemaduras

Burn scars cause high morbidity in the form of contractures, body disfigurement, and itching, as well as a high emotional impact that adversely affects patient quality of life. Laser therapy has proven effective in this setting. It is superior to topical treatments and can be used in conjunction with surgery, helping to reduce morbidity. The use of lasers in hospital dermatology departments, however, is still limited. Carbon dioxide laser is the most widely used device for reducing scar thickness, improving textural abnormalities, and treating associated contractures, which may restore the mobility of these patients when it is altered. Pulsed dye laser treatments are particularly useful for reducing erythema in recent burn scars and preventing subsequent hypertrophy. Pigment laser treatments with short pulse durations (nanoseconds or picoseconds) can improve hyperpigmentation. In this article, we review the evidence for the use of laser therapy for burn scars and propose a treatment algorithm.

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