What is the Most Effective, Cost Effective, and Safest Way to Remove Sunspots?

I am 30 years old and I have lots of dark spots on my chest caused from the sun. What would be the most effective, cost effective, and SAFEST way to remove these spots without creating any scarring?

Doctor Answers 2

Best Treatment Plan For Removing Sunspots

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This is a difficult problem to manage without a detailed examination but I will give it my best shot. True hyperpigmentation secondary to excessive solar damage is usually located on the temporal and cheek skin. It usually seems more pronounced in summer months because of a tanning of these effected areas. My method of choice is to first drastically reduce the pigment with 2 to 3 IPL (BBL) light treatments. Without using the intense light treatment first and relying strictly on the use of a topical lightening cream would take an extremely long time to notice a result. My recommendation would be as follows:

  1. Intense pulsed light (IPL, BBL) laser treatment. Will much more effectively reach the deeper skin layers and more effectively lighten the pigmented areas.
  2. After the above is done, then go to a topical skin bleaching cream (4%Hydroquinone) for maintenance and to help avoid a recurrence of the hyperpigmentation.
  3. Use sun-block because excessive solar exposure will worsen the problem and make the efforts in step 1 and 2 much less effective.
  4. For long term control (after 4 months) you can go to a 2% hydroquinone for long term maintenance.


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Treatment with IPL (intense pulsed light) is a safe, effective option for you, particularly if you are fair-skinned.  I personally use the Palomar LuxG; my patients have had excellent results.

Adarsh Vijay Mudgil, MD
New York Dermatologic Surgeon

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.