Intraoral Laser Hair Removal of a Palate Free Flap: Tips and Technique
The diversity and utility of laser procedures have expanded in recent decades, and applications for both cosmetic and medical reasons have increased. There are increasing reports of using different handheld lasers after surgery for improvement of cosmesis or function. With regards to the intraoral use of lasers, methods of minimizing cross-contamination between patients, given the expansion into the mucous membranes, have not been described. In addition to the laser handpiece coming into contact with the skin and mucosal membranes, depending on the type of laser used, the plume emitted has been reported to aerosolize not only carcinogenic compounds but also infectious particles, including herpes simplex virus (HSV) and human papilloma virus.1 As early as 1991, findings of viruses in the laser plume and intact cells on the laser handpiece after its usage on cutaneous surfaces were reported, sparking a call for standard guidelines for limiting contamination between patients in laser procedures.