Document Detail

Are home-use intense pulsed light (IPL) devices safe?
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  20625788     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
The domestic market for home-use hair removal devices is rapidly expanding and there are numerous intense pulsed light (IPL) products now available globally to consumers. Technological challenges for the design of such devices include the need to be cost-effective in mass production, easy to use without training, and most importantly, clinically effective while being eye-safe. However inexpensively these light-based systems are produced, they are designed to cause biological damage to follicular structures, so precautions to prevent both ocular and epidermal damage must be considered. At present, there are no dedicated international standards for IPL devices. This review directly compares three leading domestic IPL hair removal devices: iPulse Personal (CyDen, UK), Silk'n/SensEpil (Home Skinovations, Israel), and SatinLux/Lumea (Philips, Netherlands) for fluence, emitted wavelength spectrum, time-resolved footprint, and spatial distribution of energy. Although each device has a primary mechanical or electrical safety feature to ensure occlusion of the output aperture on the skin to prevent accidental eye exposure, the ocular hazard of each device has been measured to IEC TR 60825-9 standard using an Ocean Optics HR2000+ photo spectrometer for both potential corneal and retinal damage. Using established measurement methods, this review has shown that the measured output parameters were significantly different for the three systems. Using equipment traceable to national standards, one device was judged at its two highest settings to be hazardous for naked eye viewing. This investigation also reports on the significantly different pulse durations of the devices measured and considers the potential impact on safety and efficacy in the light of the theory of selective photothermolysis. Although these devices offer low-cost personal convenience of treatment in the privacy of the home, ocular safety may be inadequate in the event of primary safety mechanism failure.
Godfrey Town; Caerwyn Ash
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Comparative Study; Journal Article; Review     Date:  2010-07-13
Journal Detail:
Title:  Lasers in medical science     Volume:  25     ISSN:  1435-604X     ISO Abbreviation:  Lasers Med Sci     Publication Date:  2010 Nov 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2010-09-08     Completed Date:  2011-01-28     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8611515     Medline TA:  Lasers Med Sci     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  773-80     Citation Subset:  IM    
Swansea Metropolitan University, Swansea, SA1 6ED, UK.
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MeSH Terms
Equipment Safety / standards
Eye Injuries / etiology,  prevention & control
Hair Removal / adverse effects*,  instrumentation*,  standards
Laser Therapy / adverse effects*,  instrumentation*,  standards
Optical Devices / adverse effects,  standards
Self Care / adverse effects,  instrumentation

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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