I would like to look into laser hair removal for my back and shoulders. I have pretty light skin (helps that I don’t remove my shirt outside) and dark hair. I also have a fair number of small moles covering the area.

Will this cause a problem?

You should not treat moles with hairs growing from them unless you’re under a dermatologist’s care. Lasering a mole can cause it to change, which is why it should be attempted by medical professionals only.

However, if they can work around the moles without irradiating them, you should be fine.

Andrea, what do you mean by irradiating them? Is there radiation involved with this procedure? That sounds scary!


Radiation is one of those :fearful: words, but it’s not as bad as is sounds.

Anything that emits energy gives off radiation.

Electrolysis, laser, etc. use non-ionizing radiation, meaning it falls within wavelengths that are not known to disrupt molecules by causing their structure to change.

The scary kind is ionizing radiation, from nuclear waste, gamma rays, x-rays, etc. That’s why x-ray hair removal killed a lot of people. When these kinds of radiations hit living tissue, they cause all sorts of free radicals to bombard cells and cause DNA breakdown and mutation, as well as cellular disruption on a huge scale. That means anything from radiation sickness to cancer.

Prolonged exposure to certain kinds of non-ionizing radiation like UV rays has been shown to cause skin damage.

Laser and electrolysis are usually small doses at short duration. However, the energy is enough to disrupt cell structures and kill tissue, and some kinds of tissues (like moles) are more prone to bad mutations if the energy damages but doesn’t destroy the cell.

Having said that, there is no controlled long-term data on the effects of electrolysis, laser, or other methods of non-ionizing radition for hair removal compared to a population group that has not used these methods. The likelihood of long-term problems are what the medical profession calls an unknown risk, but I suspect the treatment with these types of energy is generally pretty safe. Only time will tell for sure.

I just wanted to put my hat into this subject in the terms of moles. Their have been special lasers developed that can remove the color from moles and make this “disappear” though I would STRONGLY recommend that you got to a dermatologist for this procedure. By removing color from the mole you will be unable to detect the changes which may result in skin cancer.

Absolutely, guest.

Eliminating abnormal skin growths should be done by a medical profession only. In many states, it is illegal for electrologists or laser practitioners to treat moles and other skin lesions.

As I mentioned earlier, these growths are much more prone to cellular changes that can lead to melanomas and other cancers in some cases. Leave that one to the medical pros!

None of the laser devices I have been treated with have had any effects on moles for me.

Hair removal lasers emit near infrared and /or infrared energy not UV. Any skin damage is most likely to be from thermal burns rather than cellular mutations.