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Facial Pigmentation – A scourge across all age groups Patches of dark skin colour over the face can be seen across all age groups ranging from new borns to infants to middle aged to the elderly. The causes may vary but the end result caused by facial pigmentation is mental stress and is common across all age groups. Hence, the treatment has to be done to allay the anxiety and the stress caused by facial pigmentation. The various causes for facial pigmentation can be listed as below: 1. Nevus. A birth mark and in common terminology also called as ‘mole’. A kind of nevus known as melanocytic nevus can extend from a small spot to half the face to one half of the body. The other different types of nevus may be present at birth or may develop in the first decade of a child’s life. 2. Eczema. A kind of eczema present in childhood, known as Atopic dermatitis, may be present as dry skin, itching and scaling. If ignored, it can cause patches of dryness and pigmentation spread across the body. Various kinds of allergic contact dermatitis or irritant contact dermatitis, to any chemical, can end up with pigmentation over the involved areas. 3. Infection. Localized pigmentation over any part of the body can be seen secondary to bacterial, viral and fungal infections. In certain cases, the resolution of the infection can result in post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation. In most of the cases, treatment of underlying infection can help in clearing of the pigmentation. 4. Melasma. This is the most common cause of pigmentation from patients in their early 20s to late 50s and 60s. It can also be easily called as the commonest cause for which a patient consults a dermatologist. It can manifest as localized patches of pigmentation primarily on the face and it is asymptomatic. 5. Miscellaneous. Other infrequent causes of pigmentation are toxic melanoderma (secondary to cosmetics), nevus of Ota and Ito, burn injuries, Graft Vs Host disease, chemotherapy, radiation sickness, etc. And these are the various treatment options available: Reassurance. Patients with birth marks or moles have to be counselled about the nature of the problem. Few of the nevus resolve or fade away with passage of time. For others, LASER and plastic surgery are the best options.

Sunscreen. Exposure to sun can lead to aggravation of the existing pigmentation problem especially Melasma. Use of a sunscreen with SPF25+ in the morning and afternoon will prevent the aggravation. Creams. Topical treatment with creams containing Kligman’s formula, kojic acid, glycolic acid and Vitamin A derivatives help in the treatment. Chemical Peeling. Chemical Peel with glycolic acid, pyruvic acid, lactic acid and TCA done at monthly intervals help in the treatment of pigmented skin diseases. LASER. Use of LASER has gained widespread popularity in the treatment of pigmented skin diseases especially Melasma. The following LASERs: Q:switch, Nd:YAG, Ruby Laser, and Alexandrite can be used for the treatment. Article Source

Facial pigmentation – a scourge across all age groups