Is Elongated Soft-Palate Laser Surgery Better?

Charlie my 3-year-old Frenchie needs pharyngoscopic surgery. The vet that diagnosed it was going to do laser surgery.  I was just informed the laser was out of service. I went to another surgeon who would do the procedure without a laser.

bulldog Elongated soft resection surgery

Which Surgery is Best For French Bulldog Elongated Soft Palate

As I read about the surgery, should I find another doctor who will use the laser? cost is not the issue I want what’s best for my dog; should I wait?  or get it done sooner as opposed to later?

My dog is miserable. She can’t sleep, she can’t play she gets anxious and scared when she has an episode

Please help me make the best choice for my Frenchie Charli

1 Answers
Dr. Roy Kraemer Staff answered 3 years ago

Is Laser Better Than Cut-And-Suture For Soft Palate Surgery?

In the realm of surgeries, various options often present themselves, each with its merits, making the selection of the “gold standard” seem overwhelming.

Laser Versa Cut-and-Suture Surgery for Bulldog Soft Palate

While I’ll delve into the pros and cons of each approach, it’s crucial to understand that the specific surgical technique should be of least concern to you.

regardless of their preferred method, your primary focus should be on finding a qualified veterinarian with experience and expertise in treating brachycephalic obstructive airway syndrome (BOAS).

elongated soft palate surgeon view close up

 Laser Vs. Cut and Suture Palate Surgery: Merits and Drawbacks

Common points of comparison include:

  1. Speed: Which method is faster?
  2. Bleeding: Which one causes less bleeding?
  3. Cost: Which one is more expensive?
  4. Infection: Which one carries a higher risk for infection?
  5. Post Operatively:
    • Swelling: Which one causes more post-op swelling?
    • Thermal Burn: Which one results in more thermal burn damage?
    • Scar: Which one leads to more post-op scarring?
    • Healing Time: Which one takes longer to heal?
  6. Improvement: Which one yields a better all-around outcome?

The emphasis should be placed on the surgeon’s experience and expertise rather than the specific technique used.

Elongate Palate Surgery Duration and Safety:

Experience more than technique choice translates to a shorter surgical time and optimal outcomes.

Elongate Palate Surgery Bleeding, Swelling, and Infection:

Regardless of the chosen technique (laser or traditional), a meticulous, sterile approach ensures a smooth and successful surgery for your bulldog.

Elongate Palate Surgery Success Rate

The consistent success rate in any surgical procedure relies heavily on the experience and expertise of the surgical team

  • Superior skills and efficiency.
  • The meticulous technique ensures a smooth recovery for your bulldog.
  • Focus on hygiene and sterile procedures minimizes infection risk.
  • Surgon’s track record and consistently positive outcomes.


  1. Has performed a high volume of similar surgeries.
  2. Has a proven track record of success.
  3. Prioritizes minimizing pain and recovery time.
  4. Is experienced in managing potential complications.

Is Laser Better For Soft Palate Surgery? QUESTIONS TO ASK:

Here are the important inquiries you want to make:


What is the extent of the surgeon’s expertise?


How adept is the surgeon in performing their preferred surgical method for this specific condition?


How well-trained and experienced is the surgical team, especially in managing anesthesia and recovery for bulldogs?

oxygen pre anesthesia for bulldogs

If your surgeon possesses expertise and proficiency with the laser, they should utilize that method. Similarly, if they are adept at cutting and suturing, it would be preferable for them to proceed with that approach.

 Is Laser Better For Soft Palate Surgery? SUMMARY

Most surgical procedures offer a range of techniques, each with its own set of advantages.

The key factors that ultimately influence the choice are the surgeon’s skill, their familiarity with the chosen technique, and the competence of the support team in the operating room.

My Soft Palate Surgery Preferences:

Over two decades ago, as I began my specialty bulldog practice, I presented this laser versus traditional cut-and-suture palate surgery debate to a renowned board-certified local surgeon.

His insightful response favored the traditional cut-and-suture approach, citing less post-operative scarring. This perspective influenced my initial approach to these procedures.

While my practice has evolved, incorporating advancements like a laser, I prioritize techniques that ensure long-term success for my patients, regardless of the chosen method.

Laser and cut-and-suture techniques have pros and cons, necessitating careful consideration and individualization based on the patient’s unique needs and the surgeon’s expertise.


The significant financial investment required for surgical equipment like “hot lasers” can influence decision-making in veterinary clinics and among individual surgeons.

The natural desire to recoup the investment can lead to a tendency to prioritize its use as the primary surgical option. This, in turn, can create a potential bias towards the perception that the laser method yields superior outcomes, even if the evidence is inconclusive or contradictory.

Elongated Palate UltimateFurthermore, the more they use a specific device, the more adept they become at its usage, solidifying it as their preferred choice.


The terms “cold laser” and “hot laser” are often used to describe different types of lasers based on their applications and the effects they produce.

I use a class 4 cold laser post-operatively to reduce swelling and stimulate healing.

Here are the key differences:

Cold Laser (Low-Level Laser Therapy, – LLLT):

These are designed to stimulate cellular function and promote healing without generating significant heat.

Cold lasers are primarily used to

  • stimulate cellular processes
  • reduce inflammation
  • accelerate tissue repair

They are commonly used in physical therapy, sports medicine, and wound healing.

Hot Laser (High-Level Laser Therapy, HLLT):

These are designed for

  • cutting
  • coagulation
  • tissue ablation.

These lasers produce more heat and can be used for surgical and therapeutic purposes.

Hot lasers are employed in surgical procedures such as laser eye surgery, dermatological procedures, and various soft tissue surgeries.

It is not typically used for non-invasive therapeutic purposes.

Hot Laser vs. Cold Laser SAFETY:

The main difference lies in the intended use and the thermal effects produced by the lasers.

Cold lasers focus on non-invasive therapeutic applications with minimal heat, while hot lasers are designed for surgical and tissue-altering procedures, producing significant heat as part of their mechanism.


A cold laser is non-invasive and generally considered safe. It does not cause thermal damage to tissues and is well-tolerated by patients.

nose hyperkeratosis laser therapy


Hot lasers being used in surgical and invasive procedures carry inherent risks associated with tissue heating and ablative effects. Proper safety precautions are crucial in its application.

Hot laser proper safety precautions are crucial in its application.

I trust that I have provided clarity and assisted you in your decision-making process.

Kind regards,

Dr. Kraemer, Vet4Bulldog

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The information provided on this platform is for general informational purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your veterinarian regarding any medical condition. It's important to always consider professional medical advice promptly and not to delay seeking it based on information you've read on this platform. Any reliance on the information provided here is entirely at your discretion.

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