New Insights into Cutaneous Laser Stimulation – Dependency on Skin and Laser Type

Ken Steffen Frahm*, Sabata Gervasio, Federico Arguissain, André Mouraux


Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftTidsskriftartikelForskningpeer review

7 Citationer (Scopus)
53 Downloads (Pure)


Cutaneous laser stimulation is a proficient tool to investigate the function of the nociceptive system. However, variations in laser–skin interactions, causes by different skin anatomies and laser wavelength, affects the robustness of nociceptor activation. Thus, thoroughly understanding how the skin is heated by a laser pulse is important to characterize the thermal response properties of nociceptors. The study aim was to investigate how skin type and laser wavelength influences nociceptor activation during laser stimulation. Ten healthy subjects were exposed to brief CO2 (low skin penetrance) and Nd:YAP (high skin penetrance) laser stimuli delivered to the dorsum and palm of the hand, using three different intensities. Reaction times and perception intensities were recorded. A computational model simulated heat transfer in the skin and nociceptor activation in different skin types across different wavelengths and intensities. Intensity ratings were significantly lower and reaction-times significantly increased for CO2 laser stimuli in the palm compared to the dorsum. This was not the case for Nd:YAP laser stimuli. The computational model showed that these differences can be explained by the different skin absorption of CO2 and Nd:YAP lasers. For CO2 laser stimuli, the thicker stratum corneum of the glabrous skin reduces nociceptor activation, whereas the high penetrating Nd:YAP laser elicits a similar nociceptor activation, irrespective of skin type. Nociceptor activation during laser stimulation highly depends on skin composition and laser wavelength, especially for lasers having a low penetrance wavelength. A computational model showed that this difference could be explained primarily due to differences in skin composition.

Sider (fra-til)71-84
Antal sider14
StatusUdgivet - 10 nov. 2020

Bibliografisk note

Funding Information:
This study was funded the Danish National Research Foundation (DNRF121).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 IBRO

Copyright 2020 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


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