How Does PDL Work?

PDL, or pulse dye laser, is a laser treatment used in dermatology to treat blood vessels in the skin. PDL utilizes a concentrated beam of light in the form of a laser applied by a handheld device held directly to the skin to target these damaged blood vessels. The heat from the laser, which uses a yellow light, destroys the blood vessels without hurting any of the tissue or skin surrounding the blood vessels. The wavelength and duration used in PDL treatment depends on the type and nature of a patient’s vascular lesion. PDL is coveted as a treatment of vascular lesions because of the limited damage it causes and the absence of any long-term damage to the skin.

Conditions Treated by PDL

PDL is used in the treatment of vascular lesions. It has also been used in the treatment of port wine stains to reduce the appearance of this birthmark and also prevent future growth that might lead to “cobblestones” in adulthood. PDL has been used as well to treat warts, hemangiomas, telangiectasias and hypertrophic scars. Topical anesthesia is often used when treating conditions with PDL.

Related Conditions


Birthmarks are congenital skin conditions that typically appear at birth or shortly thereafter. Learn More

Port Wine Stains

A port wine stain is a vascular birthmark that resembles wine spilled across the skin. Learn More

Spider Veins

Spider veins are a condition of the skin in which small “spidery” veins appear under the surface of the skin. Learn More

Vascular Conditions

In a vascular condition, the blood vessels of the body are either damaged or act in such a way to affect the appearance and condition of the skin. Learn More


Warts are a common condition that create small, granular skin growths on the surface of the skin. Learn More

Other Treatments

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