Laser Treatment of Pigmented Lesions

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Mitchel P. Goldman, MD

Dr. Goldman provides us with some key takeaway points regarding the laser treatment of pigmented lesions…

  1. Nevus of Ota respond to Q-switched laser—we’ve never seen a report of it becoming melanoma; Picosecond is efficacious as well perhaps with fewer treatments.
  2. There are various approaches to treating lentigines—multiple treatments with lasers combined with bleaching agents, sun screen and sun avoidance In addition, resurfacing and chemical peels may also be effective.
  3. Both congenital nevi and aquired nevi can go away with laser treatment; acquired nevi may be easier to remove (sometimes only 1 treatment is needed); Picosecond also shows benefit with perhaps fever treatments.
  4. Melasma—this is one of the most difficult conditions to treat; it typically has a peak in ages 40-50 and is more around the central face. The most important part of treatment is protection from both sun and other light. Laser and IPL treatment is best when combined with skin bleaching agents. We have found Lytera™ to work best.
  5. Infraorbital Pigmentation-Q-Switch Ruby Laser can help with this; PDL and non-ablative and ablative fractionated and confluent resurfacing is also helpful.
  6. What about lentigo maligna? Q-Switch Alexandrite Laser + zyclara may be an appropriate procedure; however, long-term results are unknown; this is also an alternative approach to patients who do not want to undergo surgery.