Palomar has received FDA clearance for their latest product, a hand-held, battery-powered laser. It’s called the “PaloVia”, and is the first unit cleared by the FDA for home use.
The PaloVia uses a fractional method, in which only small “polka-dots” of skin are treated, and is non-ablative – meaning there won’t be any raw, oozing areas after the treatment. It uses an established wavelength for treatment, 1410nm.
The company recommends daily treatment to the crow’s feet area for one month, and then maintenance treatments twice weekly thereafter.
In their preliminary study, 92% of patients saw an improvement of one step on the Fitzpatrick wrinkle scale (FWS). The FWS is a nine point scale, so one step, while measureable, is a pretty mild change.
Palomar has been pretty secretive about the other parameters of the laser. Obviously, the power of this laser is much, much less than an office-based machine, so the depth of penetration of the laser beam will be less, tissue heating will be less, and so the total effect will be much less. It might be enough to treat the thin skin around the eyes, but probably not enough to treat other facial areas, where the skin is thicker. It will probably be a good addition to retin-A based skin care and Botox, but time will tell.
Nevertheless, the whole concept of “at-home” lasers is newsworthy. Palomar is marketing these through QVC, so you probably start seeing these on television soon.