What is it?
Melasma is a chronic pigmentation disorder where black/ brown patches appear on face mostly involving the cheeks, above eyebrows, upper lips, nose and sometimes the complete face. In some cases, it can affect the ams, shoulders, neck.
It has a long term progression and is not treatable by usual skin lightening products and treatments as it is a deep pigmentation that involves multiple layers of skin. It is present in epidermis, dermis, and the pigment is scattered over multiple skin layers, due to which the pigmentation keeps changing the hue. It may sometimes appear lighter and get very dark especially after sun exposure or stress.
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Some facts about Melasma
Melasma can appear in both men and women.
It is most commonly seen in women of child bearing age and appears mostly after pregnancy.
Males who have a travelling job, or excess sun exposure and stress can get melasma.
Family history also plays a role. A daughter is more prone to develop melasma if her mother has it, due to similar skin types.
Causes of Melasma are:
- Hormonal fluctuation
- Post-pregnancy (most common)
- Excess sun exposure
- Taking oral contraceptive pills/birth control pills.
- Use of certain cosmetics, products and creams that irritate the skin.
- If any family members or close relatives have melasma.
How is Melasma treated ?
While melasma is still one of the most difficult types of pigmentation to treat due to its multi-factor cause and etiology, dermatologists have developed several methods to provide a long-term solution for melasma.
The main challenge with melasma patients is use of over the counter products. Various skin lightening creams containing steroids as suggested by friend or relatives, may or may not work to reduce the pigmentation but surely makes the skin thin and sensitive. This is why advanced medical treatments have to be withheld till skin recovers.
Medical treatments for Melasma
1. OTC creams
There are various over the counter creams available for melasma that contain HYDROQUINONE and steroids. One should make sure to use these creams only when suggested by the dermatologist after examining your skin and devising an application protocol according to the case. If used inappropriately, these creams can make the skin thin and sensitive.
2. Chemical Peels and Lasers
These treatments work specifically to fight the melanin pigment causing melasma and provide a solution for deeper pigmentation.
Even skin tone
No need of heavy makeup to camouflage melasma
One can stop it from spreading further
Improved social life
What’s at skinfinity?
Skinfinity has over 1000 success stories of patients with melasma. Our peculiarity is the diagnosis of individual case with extensive history and examination to understand the spread of melanin pigment.
According to the depth and duration of melasma, patient is given one or a combination of the following treatments-
1) Medical treatment
A one month medical treatment including medicines, creams and vitamins are given for cases with recent and lesser spread of melasma.
2) Anti-melasma Photofacial
This is the best method for a melasma of less than 1 year duration and localised to small patch. This treatment is taken as a facial, it has no downtime. 6 Facials are given at an interval of 20 days to get desired result.
3) Chemical peel
Superficial or medium depth chemical peels containing AHAs and BHAs are use in various combinations according to depth of melasma as assessed by dermatoscopy by dermatologist.
4) Nd- YAG laser
This laser works by breaking the melanin pigment. The pigment particles are then absorbed and disintegrated by the phagocytic cells of the skin. Q Switched ND YAG Laser is the treatment of choice for melasma in fair skin patients.
5) Cosmelan and Dermamelan treatment
This treatment is used for an extensive melasma that has spread over time, and is difficult to get rid of, so, a kind of chemical peel that is cosmelan comes into action.
Cosmelan 1 is applied in the evening so that there is no sun exposure. Then we leave it on for almost 8 hour and patient can wipe it off in the morning. The patient is asked to use as much as less light as possible. Then after 3 days cosmelan 2 is used by the patient daily along with a moisturiser and a sunscreen. After this skin peels off and newer skin that is revealed is healthier and flawless.