With the Fraxel laser treatments, the Doc also used IPL so it was a double treatment for Melasma. I had two rather large brown spots on my face (one looked like a Hitler mustache!), and wanted some tightening of the skin as well. After treatment (which does sting), I had redness and swelling, then flaking for a few days. After that all seemed perfectly fine. It was about 6 months later that I noticed my skin was Hyper? Pigmenting, with the Brown spots now being much larger and spread out all over my face, following a line around my face, (like when you use makeup that's too dark) and you notice that it doesn't match your neck color. My face is now mostly brown pigmented, but i am Caucasian with Euro light olive skin.
I'd say overall, it isn't worth the expense and trouble if you have sensitive skin that's prone to freckling or Hormonal melasma. I use Sunscreen constantly, but all it takes now to aggravate the brown spots is simply walking from my car to the house! Kind of wish I hadn't done it. I didn't have this problem before the laser treatment.
Don't do it if you live in the South, where the sun is extra intense! You can't possibly stay completely out of the sun there.