Intended human exposure to non-ionizing radiation for cosmetic purposes

International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection, . (2020) Intended human exposure to non-ionizing radiation for cosmetic purposes. Health physics, 118 (5). pp. 562-579.

[img] PDF - Published Version
Available under License CC BY-NC-ND (Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives).


Official URL: https://edoc.unibas.ch/91168/

Downloads: Statistics Overview


Cosmetic devices using non-ionizing radiation (NIR) are increasingly available for people who wish to modify their appearance for aesthetic purposes. There are a wide range of NIR modalities used for cosmetic procedures, including devices that use optical radiation (laser, intense pulsed light, and light-emitting diode), electromagnetic fields, and ultrasound. Common procedures involving the application of NIR include epilation, skin rejuvenation, body sculpting and contouring, treatment of vascular and skin lesions, tattoo removal, and scar reduction. The majority of research on the use of NIR cosmetic devices has focused on the efficacy of the treatment rather than adverse effects or complications. Studies that assessed safety consisted mostly of case reports and small case series. Common adverse effects on the skin reported include mild and transient pain, erythema, swelling, and changes in pigmentation. Less common, more severe side effects include burns, blisters, scarring, persisting erythema, altered pigmentation, and eye damage. Some of the latter may have resulted from treatment errors. Particular groups of people that may be at greater risk from optical radiation include people with dark skin, with high sun exposure, and taking photosensitizing medications or supplements. There is lack of evidence for the safety profile of cosmetic NIR procedures during pregnancy. Reports of injuries to workers administering treatments with cosmetic NIR devices are rare, but inadvertent damage to the eye from optical devices may occur. Randomized controlled trials are required to fully assess potential adverse effects from the use of NIR cosmetic devices. Regulation varies worldwide and some regions apply the same safety classification and guidance as for medical devices. In order to reduce harm associated with the use of cosmetic devices, ICNIRP considers it important that regulations that cover all types and frequencies of cosmetic NIR devices are adopted worldwide and that there is greater oversight regarding their use.
Faculties and Departments:09 Associated Institutions > Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH)
09 Associated Institutions > Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH) > Department of Epidemiology and Public Health (EPH) > Environmental Exposures and Health Systems Research > Physical Hazards and Health (Röösli)
UniBasel Contributors:Röösli, Martin
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
Related URLs:
Identification Number:
edoc DOI:
Last Modified:28 Dec 2022 13:13
Deposited On:28 Dec 2022 13:13

Repository Staff Only: item control page