Melasma typically appears as brown patches on the forehead, cheeks, upper lip, nose, and chin, and may get worse after sun exposure. It is most commonly found in women, and often occurs during or after hormonal changes such as pregnancy or initiating birth control. Strict sun protection with broad spectrum sunscreen, as well as wearing hats and staying in the shade are very important in preventing further darkening of the skin, or maintaining results after treatment.
Melasma Treatment Options
Melasma can be treated with products that contain depigmenting agents such as hydroquinone, or tretinoin, an acid that increases skin cell turnover. Georgia Skin Cancer also offers in-office procedures to lighten the appearance of melasma including chemical peels, microdermabrasion, and Laser Genesis. These procedures typically require a series of 4-6 treatments before seeing a dramatic improvement.