Glossary

Laser

This is an acronym for light amplification created by stimulated emission of radiation; an optical device that produces an intense monochromatic beam of coherent light.

Laser-assisted Liposuction

A surgical procedure, for fat removal, where a doctor inserts a laser-tipped probe, which is almost four times thinner than the traditional cannula used with ordinary liposuction, under the skin. The heat from the laser melts the fat which is then suctioned away. As a side effect, the body feels the heat from the laser, stimulating the production of collagen (the connective tissue which helps to prevent the skin from sagging). At the same time, the laser will stop bleeding from the tissue and blood vessels in this area thus reducing swelling and bleeding. The combined effect of less swelling and more collagen means that the laser treated area will look smoother and will continue to improve over the next few months. 

Laser Gum Recontouring

This gentle, painless procedure enables the dentist to precisely recontour, or reshape, the gum line of each tooth, enhancing the appearance of a “gummy” smile.

Laser Hair Removal
An Alexandrite, Diode or ND: Yag laser treatment that employs pulsating light waves to kill the base of the hair root in the follicle and impede hair growth after three to five treatments.
Laser Resurfacing Treatments

An effective treatment for minor facial flaws, laser resurfacing—a popular option in the family of ablative (wounding) skin resurfacing techniques—removes aged or sun-damaged skin to allow younger looking skin to grow in its place. 

LATISSE®

A prescription treatment for hypotrichosis (having inadequate or not enough eyelashes) used to grow eyelashes, making them longer, thicker and darker.

Laugh Lines

A slang term used to describe wrinkles that form from the nose to the mouth, also known as nasolabial folds.

LED Light Therapy

This application of light energy to the skin for therapeutic benefits creates a natural photobiochemical reaction similar to the process of plant photosynthesis. NASA’s space program has proven that LED light therapy (near-infrared) promotes wound healing and human tissue growth. LED Light Therapy can be used on all skin types and it is non-ablative, non-invasive and painless and has no downtime.

Levulan

Levulan PDT works by applying a light-sensitizing chemical solution to the skin area that needs treatment and then exposing the area to blue light. The photosensitive chemicals, which have been absorbed into the skin, react with the particular wavelength of blue light to generate reactive oxygen radicals that destroy the potentially precancerous or cancerous skin cells. This results in significant improvement in precancerous conditions such as actinically damaged skin, sun damaged skin, moderate to severe cystic acne and potentially superficial skin cancers. Additionally, it improves wrinkles, pore size, skin texture, pigmentation, rosacea and sebaceous hyperplasia, and potentially prevents the development of skin cancer.

Lidocaine

A common local anesthetic used topically to relieve itching, burning and pain from skin inflammations; injected as a dental anesthetic; or as a local anesthetic for minor surgery.

Light-based Laser Treatments

These gentle laser treatments use light to treat common skin care issues such as age spots, wrinkles and skin discoloration. Light therapy produces a powerful therapeutic healing effect on living skin tissue. Red light is able to penetrate skin deeply without being invasive or abrasive to the skin tissue. It works by increasing blood circulation and lymphatic activity, stimulating healing. Blue light (or LED light) interacts with blemished skin, creating singlet oxygen. The singlet oxygen attacks acne-causing bacteria and eliminates pH gradients, making the skin inhospitable for acne-causing bacteria and inhibiting the spread of acne.

Light Chemical Peels

Skin peeling involves an application of a chemical solution to sun-damaged, unevenly pigmented and finely wrinkled facial areas. The procedure is meant to diminish imperfections by peeling away the skin's top layers. Generally, the most superficial peels are those using alphahydroxy acids (AHA), such as glycolic, lactic or fruit acid. Various concentrations of an AHA may be applied weekly or at longer intervals to obtain the best result. 

Limited Tummy Tuck

Used for some patients with smaller amounts of loose skin and extra fat, where a full tummy tuck may not be needed. In a limited tummy tuck, less skin and fat is excised and liposuction is liberally used around the entire abdomen and waistline. This results in a quicker recovery and less of a scar.

Lingual Braces

These braces align the teeth the same way as regular braces, but are attached to the back side of the teeth, which makes them completely non-visible.

Lip Augmentation

This procedure improves deflated, drooping or sagging lips, corrects their symmetry or reduces fine lines and wrinkles around them. This is accomplished either by injection of a soft tissue filler, such as collagen or by the placement of synthetic or grafted material.

Lip Implants

There are several types of lip implants. Due to its ease of placement and consistent results, freeze-dried sheet collagen, like AlloDerm and Dermaplant, is the lip implant material of choice for many plastic surgeons, but it has a temporary effect. Synthetic implants, like Gore-Tex, SoftForm and soft ePTFE offer permanent results. They do not shrink and are never absorbed into the body. They also remain in place because scar tissue forms on either end; but they are foreign substances and may become infected or become rejected by the body. Fascia, white connective tissue, which lasts 6 to 12 months, can also be harvested and used for lip implantation. Fat grafting, harvesting fat from your own body, also has shown permanent results in approximately half of the people who try it.

Lip Injections

There are several different types of lip injections to enhance the lips. Prepared from the collagen found in cow skin, collagen injections are used to temporarily augment the lips. Fat can also be injected into the lip. The fat is harvested from another area of the body (often the abdomen or thighs). Artecoll is composed mainly of tiny synthetic beads (polymethyl methacrylate) that stay in the lips, and raise them. This technique lasts longer than fat or collagen injections. Autologen is collagen extracted from the patient's own skin, often from excess skin removed in a facelift, and is longer-lasting. Dermalogen, which is more temporary, is extracted from the skin of a cadaver. The donor material is screened and processed to avoid the spread of disease. Fascia (white connective tissue) extracted from a cadaver, can be injected or surgically implanted to enhance lips. HylaForm injections, are a type of tissue made up of a molecular component of the human body, but extracted from a cadaver; and Restylane, a clear gel made from hyaluronic acid similar to that naturally found in the body, can also be used for lip augmentation.

Lip Lift

This technique surgically lifts the corners of the aging mouth and can eliminate the pronounced droop and unhappy facial expression that often develops with advanced age. By cutting away small diamonds of skin just above the corners of the mouth, the vermilion (border of the lips) is raised into a slight smile.

Lip Lines

These are the lines that form around the lips due to aging, smoking and sun damage.

Lipoabdominoplasty

A cosmetic procedure that combines traditional liposuction with a traditional abdominoplasty (tummy tuck), allowing surgeons to transform patients' tummies after child birth and/or weight loss, into a beautiful shape.

Liposculpture
A type of liposuction that utilizes ultrasound to break fat into small sections before it is removed. During the liposuction procedure, the plastic surgeon thins out the fat on top of the muscles, which gives an indentation, creating the illusion of toned muscles.
Liposuction

This procedure removes fat from many different sites on the human body. The doctor makes a tiny incision and inserts a hollow, stainless-steel tube (called a cannula) into the deep fat layer. In a typical procedure, the doctor pushes and pulls the tube through the fat layer. As the cannula moves, it breaks up fat cells, and a vacuum pump or syringe removes the fat with suction. Areas affected can range from the abdomen, thighs and buttocks, to the neck, backs of the arms and elsewhere. 

Liquid Lift

This is a non-surgical procedure in which the doctor injects fillers under the skin to restore volume. It is known as a facelift using dermal fillers.

Lower Blepharoplasty

A medical procedure that reshapes the lower eyelid through surgery where excess tissue is either repositioned or removed, and surrounding muscles and tendons are reinforced. Lower eyelid blepharoplasty can reduce wrinkles and puffy bags under the eyes.

Lower Body Lift

A surgical procedure to remove excess skin and fat from the abdomen, hips and lower back, to lift the buttocks and outer thighs and to tighten the underlying muscles of the abdominal wall. It is frequently combined with liposuction.

Lumineers
A brand of thin porcelain veneers that can be fitted to your existing teeth without the need to drill or grind them down, although some mild reshaping may be necessary. A skilled dentist will ensure the gumline is perfectly smooth once Lumineers are in place.