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Gaseous and Particulate Content of Laser Hair Removal Plume.
JAMA Dermatol 2016; 152(12):1320-1326JD

Abstract

Importance

Potentially harmful chemicals are released when tissues are vaporized. Laser hair removal (LHR) causes heating and often vaporization of hairs, producing both a signature malodorous plume and visible particulates.

Objective

To characterize the chemical composition and quantify the ultrafine particle content of the plume generated during LHR.

Design, Setting, and Participants

In the laser center of a large academic hospital, discarded terminal hairs from the trunk and extremities were collected from 2 adult volunteers. The hair samples were sealed in glass gas chromatography chambers and treated with a laser. The laser plume was analyzed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS). During LHR treatment, two 6-L negative pressure canisters were used to capture 30 seconds of laser plume, and a portable condensation particle counter was used to measure ultrafine particulates (<1 µm). Ultrafine particle concentrations were measured within the treatment room, within the waiting room, and outside the building.

Main Outcomes and Measures

The chemical content of the laser plume was analyzed with GC-MS and screened for aerosolized toxins using Environmental Protection Agency-certified methods. The ambient concentration of ultrafine particles during LHR was measured by condensation particle counters.

Results

Analysis with GC-MS identified 377 chemical compounds. Sixty-two of these compounds, of which 13 are known or suspected carcinogens and more than 20 are known environmental toxins, exhibited strong absorption peaks. During LHR, the portable condensation particle counters documented an 8-fold increase compared with the ambient room baseline level of ultrafine particle concentrations (ambient room baseline, 15 300 particles per cubic centimeter [ppc]; LHR with smoke evacuator, 129 376 ppc), even when a smoke evacuator was in close proximity (5.0 cm) to the procedure site. When the smoke evacuator was turned off for 30 seconds, there was a more than 26-fold increase in particulate count compared with ambient baseline levels (ambient baseline, 15 300 ppc; LHR without smoke evacuator for 30 seconds, 435 888 ppc).

Conclusions and Relevance

These findings establish the concern that the burning-hair plume often present during LHR should be considered a biohazard, warranting the use of smoke evacuators, good ventilation, and respiratory protection, especially for health care workers with prolonged exposure to LHR plume.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Wellman Center for Photomedicine, Department of Dermatology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston2Division of Dermatology, David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles.Wellman Center for Photomedicine, Department of Dermatology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston.Department of Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston4Department of Environmental Health, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts.Department of Environmental Health, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts.Chemical Instrumentation Center, Department of Chemistry, Boston University, Boston, Massachusetts.Wellman Center for Photomedicine, Department of Dermatology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

27385074

Citation

Chuang, Gary S., et al. "Gaseous and Particulate Content of Laser Hair Removal Plume." JAMA Dermatology, vol. 152, no. 12, 2016, pp. 1320-1326.
Chuang GS, Farinelli W, Christiani DC, et al. Gaseous and Particulate Content of Laser Hair Removal Plume. JAMA Dermatol. 2016;152(12):1320-1326.
Chuang, G. S., Farinelli, W., Christiani, D. C., Herrick, R. F., Lee, N. C., & Avram, M. M. (2016). Gaseous and Particulate Content of Laser Hair Removal Plume. JAMA Dermatology, 152(12), pp. 1320-1326. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2016.2097.
Chuang GS, et al. Gaseous and Particulate Content of Laser Hair Removal Plume. JAMA Dermatol. 2016 12 1;152(12):1320-1326. PubMed PMID: 27385074.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Gaseous and Particulate Content of Laser Hair Removal Plume. AU - Chuang,Gary S, AU - Farinelli,William, AU - Christiani,David C, AU - Herrick,Robert F, AU - Lee,Norman C Y, AU - Avram,Mathew M, PY - 2016/7/8/pubmed PY - 2017/6/21/medline PY - 2016/7/8/entrez SP - 1320 EP - 1326 JF - JAMA dermatology JO - JAMA Dermatol VL - 152 IS - 12 N2 - Importance: Potentially harmful chemicals are released when tissues are vaporized. Laser hair removal (LHR) causes heating and often vaporization of hairs, producing both a signature malodorous plume and visible particulates. Objective: To characterize the chemical composition and quantify the ultrafine particle content of the plume generated during LHR. Design, Setting, and Participants: In the laser center of a large academic hospital, discarded terminal hairs from the trunk and extremities were collected from 2 adult volunteers. The hair samples were sealed in glass gas chromatography chambers and treated with a laser. The laser plume was analyzed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS). During LHR treatment, two 6-L negative pressure canisters were used to capture 30 seconds of laser plume, and a portable condensation particle counter was used to measure ultrafine particulates (<1 µm). Ultrafine particle concentrations were measured within the treatment room, within the waiting room, and outside the building. Main Outcomes and Measures: The chemical content of the laser plume was analyzed with GC-MS and screened for aerosolized toxins using Environmental Protection Agency-certified methods. The ambient concentration of ultrafine particles during LHR was measured by condensation particle counters. Results: Analysis with GC-MS identified 377 chemical compounds. Sixty-two of these compounds, of which 13 are known or suspected carcinogens and more than 20 are known environmental toxins, exhibited strong absorption peaks. During LHR, the portable condensation particle counters documented an 8-fold increase compared with the ambient room baseline level of ultrafine particle concentrations (ambient room baseline, 15 300 particles per cubic centimeter [ppc]; LHR with smoke evacuator, 129 376 ppc), even when a smoke evacuator was in close proximity (5.0 cm) to the procedure site. When the smoke evacuator was turned off for 30 seconds, there was a more than 26-fold increase in particulate count compared with ambient baseline levels (ambient baseline, 15 300 ppc; LHR without smoke evacuator for 30 seconds, 435 888 ppc). Conclusions and Relevance: These findings establish the concern that the burning-hair plume often present during LHR should be considered a biohazard, warranting the use of smoke evacuators, good ventilation, and respiratory protection, especially for health care workers with prolonged exposure to LHR plume. SN - 2168-6084 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/27385074/Gaseous_and_Particulate_Content_of_Laser_Hair_Removal_Plume L2 - https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamadermatology/fullarticle/10.1001/jamadermatol.2016.2097 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -