The use of surgical diode lasers is a worldwide trend and presents numerous advantages over traditional surgical techniques. It also has advantages over CO2 surgical laser, which despite its use as a surgical instrument for more than 40 years, is expensive and difficult to maintain equipment.
The use of laser as an ablation tool in dentistry, used to remove caries, started soon after the first laser was invented. Since then, the use of high power lasers has been gaining adherents in several areas of dentistry, both in hard dental tissues and in soft tissues such as gingival tissues, mucous membranes, etc.
The wavelength at 980 nm is especially suitable for the surgical purpose, due to the presence of a local maximum in the water absorption spectrum in this region.
However, wavelength at 808 or 810 nm is also commonly used in surgeries, however the water absorption coefficient in this region is 70 times less than at 980 nm and its penetration into the tissues is in the range of 2-3 cm. On the other hand, in this region the absorption of light by blood components such as hemoglobin and oxyhemoglobin is greater than at 980 nm. The laser at 808 nm is cited as especially indicated for ablation of prostate tissues, for example and other urological indications, as well as the 980 nm laser.
The laser at 808 or 810 nm is also used for the treatment of dermatological vascular lesions, because these wavelengths lie in a region of high absorption in hemoglobin and melanin, in addition to its operation as a surgical tool.
The greater the absorption of laser radiation by the water present in a living tissue, the less its penetration into it. In the case of surgical lasers at 970 or 980 nm, wavelengths known as “gold standard” in surgical diode lasers, the penetration length is around 2.0 mm, making this laser quite suitable for preservation of the tissue adjacent to the tissue undergoing incision or treatment, and also of the internal organs, which are completely preserved due to the low coefficient of light transmission in this wavelength range.
Another crucial property, related to the high absorption in water and blood is the good hemostatic and coagulative action of these lasers, aspect essential to a surgical laser. In addition, the postoperative period is more comfortable for the patient, since recovery concerning laser surgeries is faster than surgeries performed with conventional steel cutting instruments (scalpels).