I am an african american male affected by Folliculitis of the beard for several years and just recently I had laser hair removal (Gental Yag Laser) to get rid of the hairs. Although this has definitively helped with the underlying problem, after the hair was removed I had extensive hyperpigmentation from all the years with folliculitis. I was prescribed creams: hydroquinone 4% and and also Tri-luma, but for months, they have failed to lighten the area. Now considering peels. What would be best?
Deep Hyperpigmentation from Folliculitis Scarring. What Treatment Would Be Best if Lightening Creams (4% Hydrqnone) Do Not Work?
Doctor Answers 1
Hyperpigmentation from Ingrown Hair
Hi NG. We have several suggestions. Normally post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation such as you are describing will resolve on it's own if the ingrown hairs stop. This is the normal progression over the course of a year with our laser hair removal patients. So the first option is just to wait.
The second option is to find a physician's office where higher strength hydroquinone (HQ) is used. At our office, we compound up to 8% HQ.
Finally, we use q-switched ND:Yg lasers to address the issue when topical products like HQ fail. Q-switched lasers are commonly used for tattoo removal, birthmark removal and sun damage, but can be very effective for removing long term dark scarring like you are describing. Good luck.