Altus Medical

Altus Medical is an aesthetic laser manufacturer. Their products include the CoolGlideℱ Nd:YAG laser for removal of unwanted hair on skin types I through V.

In 2004 they changed their name to Cutera. The information below is for archival purposes.

Contact information

  • 821 Cowan Road, Burlingame, CA 94010
  • 650.552.9700

Available devices

Altus Medical develops, manufactures, and markets aesthetic laser systems for dermatologists, plastic surgeons, and other practitioners.

Their CoolGlideℱ Nd:YAG laser is cleared by FDA for the treatment of vascular lesions (leg veins) and removal of unwanted hair on skin types I through V. They received hair removal clearance on March 9, 2000.

CoolGlide features a ClearView Handpiece, which provides an unobstructed view of the treatment site

Integrated contact cooling that doesn’t use Cryogen or cooling gels


  • Laser Type: High Power, Long Pulse Nd:YAG
  • Wavelength: 1064 nm
  • Fluence: 10 – 100 J/cm (1 J/cm increments)
  • Pulse Width: 10 – 100 msec (5 msec increments)
  • Spot Size: 10 mm
  • Repetition Rate: Single shot, 0.5, 0.8, 1.0, 1.2, 1.5, 2.0 Hz
  • Epidermal Preservation: Contact Cooling

In October, 1999 Dermatology Times reported that Suzanne Kilmer, M.D., director, Laser and Skin Surgery Center of Northern California. Dr. Kilmer began a new study to evaluate long wavelength lasers on patients with Fitzpatrick skin type VI.

The price of the system is $69,500.

The laser was evaluated in a three-arm study using different fluences and pulse widths. Twenty-five patients with Fitzpatrick skin types I-V participated in the study. There were 19 women and six men, each of whom had four treated sites and two control sites for a total of 100 treatment sites and 50 control sites.

The laser’s safety and efficacy were measured at different intervals. For safety, patients were evaluated at one day, one month, and three months. After one day of treatment, mild to moderate erythema was the most commonly found side effect appearing in 61 of 100 treated sites. Edema was reported in 15 cases, and blistering occurred in three sites. After three months of treatment, the safety data found no cases of erythema, edema or blistering. However, five cases of hyperpigmentation were noticed on three patients – two skin type IV and one skin type V. Efficacy was measured by counting the number of hairs through digital photographs printed at high magnification. Additionally, the sites were analyzed under an aesthetic side-by-side evaluation of the treated site vs. the control site.

Half of the sites was treated with a fluence of 50 J/cm and a pulse width of 15 ms. The other half was treated with 30 ms, of which 70 percent received 60 J/cm and 30 percent received 50 J/cm . Results after three months of treatment showed that two of the three arms were effective in reducing hair growth.

The median hair count reduction was 32 percent for the 60 J/cm and 30 ms group, and 24 percent for the 50 J/cm and 15 ms group.

Under the aesthetic side-by-side evaluation, independent evaluators preferred the post-treated sites to the pre-treated sites. “For the two treatment parameters determined to be most effective based on hair counts, the three month post-treatment photographs were preferred approximately 3 to 1,” Dr. Kilmer added. The study has been extended to evaluate results at six- and 12-month intervals and with two treatment sessions.

An article in Medical Laser Insight, Oct. ’99 stated that CoolGlide’s spot size allowed practitioners to treat approximately 15 square inches in one minute. “We lose a large percentage of our potential clientele because laser systems have not been able to treat darker skin types,” Dr. Groot points out. “Many laser systems haven’t had enough power and depth of penetration to target the hair follicle, which is needed for long-lasting results.”