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Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology
Volume 14, n° 5P1
pages 810-814 (mai 1986)
Doi : 10.1016/S0190-9622(86)70098-4
Skin closure by Nd: YAG laser welding

R. Patrick Abergel, M.D. *, , Richard F. Lyons, M.D., Rodney A. White, M.D., Gary Lask, M.D., Lois Y. Matsuoka, M.D. **, Richard M. Dwyer, M.D., Jouni Uitto, M.D., Ph.D.
* Recipient of the 1984 Ken Burdick Memorial Fellowship from Syntex, awarded by the Dermatology Foundation. 
** Department of Medicine and Surgery, University of California at Los Angeles School of Medicine, the Divisions of Dermatology and Vascular Surgery, Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, Torrance, and the Department of Medicine, Division of Dermatology, Southern Illinois University School of Medicine, Springfield. 

aReprint requests to: Dr. R. Patrick Abergel, Division of Dermatology, Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, 1000 West Carson St., Torrance, CA 90509/213-533-2217.

Skin incisions 6 mm in length were made on the backs of hairless mice. Control wounds were closed with interrupted 5-0 Prolene sutures, and experimental wounds were approximated and closed by laser welding using a Nd: YAG laser. The wounds were examined daily, and specimens were excised at weekly intervals for histopathologic study, transmission electron microscopy, tensile strength determination, and type I collagen-specific messenger ribonucleic acid measurements. The laser-welded wounds demonstrated rapid healing. Histologic study showed a functional scar tissue at day 7 and a minimal residue of the original wound at day 14. Tensile strength of the control and experimental wounds was similar at all time points. The levels of collagen-specific messenger ribonucleic acid were significantly higher in the sutured group in comparison with the laser group or with normal control skin. This study suggests that laser welding might have advantages over suturing, since the former is sterile and nontactile, does not require introduction of foreign material into the wound, and provides subjectively improved cosmetic results.

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 Supported in part by grants AM-28450, AM-35297, and GM-28833 from the U.S. Public Health Service, National Institutes of Health, and by Laser Endoscopy Medical Group, Inc., Los Angeles, CA.
 Presented at the Annual Scientific Meeting, Southern California Chapter, American College of Surgeons, Coronado, CA, Jan. 18-20, 1985, and at the Fifth Annual Meeting of the American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery, Orlando, FL, May 27-29, 1985. (Published as an abstract in Lasers Surg Med 5:180, 1985.)

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