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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Jeffrey S. Rosenthal, MD (Bridgeport Hospital)
Description: This book offers insights into the workings and benefits of the laser.
Purpose: The author's introduction brings to light questions regarding the laser and therapeutic benefits thereof that one would want satisfied prior to engaging in such an endeavor. Purposefully written with this in mind, Dr. Langdon provides the reader with these answers.
Audience: Written by a practicing dermatologist who apparently knows his way around a light emitter, this book is directed at the patient. Nonetheless, physicians and student/residents who wish a simplified explanation of the laser will also be rewarded. Despite providing information simplistically, there is a degree of didactic prose that could possibly overwhelm the nonmedical reader.
Features: Eight chapters are assembled in a manner that enable the reader to browse subjects of interest without being overwhelmed. Commencing with historical background, the book then covers laser physics and an interesting treatise regarding the components of the skin and how this large organ ages, wrinkles, and discolors, necessitating laser intervention. Next, the mechanism by which laser improves the appearance and quality of skin and the basic characteristics necessary for the laser to achieve these benefits is presented. A few photos depicting laser treatment results offer a brief glimpse of what this technology offers. Lastly, complementary procedures to the laser are noted; however, the discussion results in little appreciable understanding of the topic.
Assessment: Patients seeking a Cliff Notes version of the laser will draw information from this book. It is a solid example of how a complicated subject can be made understandable.