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Global experts develop recommendations for laser treatment of scars

Featured in Lasers in Surgery and Medicine Journal Special Issue: Energy-Based Scar Management

By Emilee Green | Mar 10, 2020

shumaker-peter-rPeter R. Shumaker, MD



Wausau, WI (March 10, 2020) – Twenty-six of the world’s leading experts in dermatology and plastic and reconstructive surgery convened to create the Laser Treatment of Traumatic Scars and Contractures: 2020 International Consensus Recommendations. Their goal was to highlight the tremendous potential of laser techniques, offer recommendations for safe and efficacious treatment, and promote wider patient access guided by future high‐quality research.

The international consensus recommendations are featured in the February 2020 issue of Lasers in Surgery and Medicine (LSM), the official journal of the American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery, Inc. (ASLMS). The special issue, led by guest editor, Peter R. Shumaker, MD, is titled Energy-Based Scar Management.   

The consensus recommendations article includes extensive, detailed discussion regarding a variety of laser platforms commonly used for traumatic scar management such as vascular lasers and ablative and non‐ablative fractional lasers, special considerations such as coding and laser treatments in skin of color, and 25 summary consensus recommendations.

 “The discovery of the transformative capabilities of fractional lasers, particularly ablative fractional lasers, has invigorated the entire field of inquiry and offered new hope to millions of patients worldwide who suffer from disfiguring and disabling scars,” said Shumaker. “However, patients without access to these treatments may not be receiving the best available care after injury.

One of the primary motivations for publishing this multidisciplinary international expert consensus is to continue to help establish ablative fractional lasers and other laser procedures as a worldwide standard of care and bring practice more in line with current knowledge.”

Peter Shumaker, MD, spent more than a third of his 22 years of service in the United States Navy as Chairman of the Department of Dermatology at the Naval Medical Center San Diego (NMCSD). For more than a decade Dr. Shumaker and colleagues have been dedicated to facilitating the functional and cosmetic recovery of wounded warriors and other patients with traumatic scarring and other related injuries. He has presented nationally and internationally on cutting edge scar management, co-authored articles published in top journals from 7 different medical specialties, led an annual national multidisciplinary Summit on trauma rehabilitation, served as team lead for a multi-year engagement in burn scar revision and restorative medicine in Vietnam, and served as co-Editor for The Scar Book published in 2017, the first comprehensive textbook on scar pathophysiology and management. He currently serves on the Editorial Board for Lasers in Surgery and Medicine.

The American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery, Inc. (ASLMS) is the largest multidisciplinary professional organization dedicated to the development and application of lasers and related technology for health care applications. ASLMS promotes excellence in patient care by advancing biomedical application of lasers and other related technologies worldwide. ASLMS membership includes physicians and surgeons representing more than 51 specialties, physicists involved in product development, biomedical engineers, biologists, nurses, industry representatives and manufacturers. For more information, visit


The American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery is the world’s largest scientific organization dedicated to promoting research, education and high standards of clinical care in the field of medical laser applications. It provides a forum for the exchange of scientific information and participation in communicating the latest developments in laser medicine and surgery to clinicians, research investigators, government and regulatory agencies, and the public.

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