17 July 2012

Researchers in the US have shown that laser treatments can be used to improve the appearance, elasticity and texture of burn scars. Experts from the University of Cincinnati, Shriners Hospitals for Children-Cincinnati and Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center compared the use of a pulsed-dye laser tool with compression therapy on paediatric burn patients who were undergoing reconstruction with newly healed skin grafts.The patients had compression treatment throughout the course of their graft, while the laser tool was applied to one half of their graft seam at six-week intervals. It was discovered that each of the three aspects of skin health being monitored improved when the laser was used in conjunction with the compression treatment. Marty Visscher, PhD, co-author and director of the Cincinnati Children's Skin Sciences Programme, said: For patients with burn scars, their self-esteem and integration into society is a huge factor in their wellbeing and quality of life. In this case, we demonstrated a good way to determine if these treatments are working and how well they are working. The findings have been published in the journal Dermatological Surgery and Ms Visscher noted the treatment could be used to treat minor burns and scars, as well as more serious burns.