What is a laser? How does a laser work?
A laser is a device that generates an intense beam of light at a specific wavelength. The surgical laser we use focuses the light produced from a contained source of carbon dioxide with current being passed through it to vaporize the water normally found in the skin and other soft tissue.
Why laser surgery?
Less pain. The use of a surgical laser results in less post-operative pain because it seals the nerve endings.
Less bleeding. The laser cauterizes, or heat-seals, small blood vessels during surgery. This speeds some procedures, thus reducing the need for anesthesia.
Little or no swelling. The energy from a laser does not crush, tear, or bruise tissue because only a beam of intense light touches the flesh.
Precision. The laser is a finer instrument than the conventional scalpel, and as such, is more efficient in the removal of unhealthy tissue while minimizing the adverse effects on surrounding healthy tissue.
Reduced risk of infection. The laser sterilizes as it removes diseased tissue, killing bacteria that cause infection.
Fewer stitches. The laser may allow for fewer stitches or eliminate the need for sutures completely.
The Animal Hospital of Pasco uses a Luxar NovaPulse 25-watt CO2 surgical laser. More technical information about laser surgery can be found on LuxarCare’s Laser-Tissue Interactions page.
Some surgeries commonly performed with laser:
- Spay or neuter
- Aural hematoma repair
- Cherry eye repair
- Distichiasis removal
- Dewclaw removal
- Anal gland removal
- Ear crops
- Mass removal
- Hernia repair