Between 1986 and 1989, 30 patients with rhinophyma were treated with the carbon dioxide (CO2) laser at our institution. The duration of disease ranged from 1 to 20 years, and the duration of follow-up ranged from 1 to 4 years. All the patients were men, and all had fair skin (predominantly type I skin); their mean age was 63 years. Patients with minor and moderate rhinophyma were treated with CO2 laser vaporization only, whereas patients with major rhinophyma were treated sequentially with CO2 laser excision and then vaporization. A spectrum of long-term results is presented. Although dilated pores developed in many patients, no re-treatment with the CO2 laser was necessary. In one patient each, leukoderma, unilateral alar lift, and mild hypertrophic scarring developed. In general, use of the CO2, laser is effective for precise decortication of rhinophyma in an office-outpatient setting.
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