my doctor said I should use Elure to lighten some dark skin spots. Are you familiar with this product? Does it work for all skin types? Do you consider it safer than other fade creams on the market in the US?
Elure Skin Lightening Cream Work?
Doctor Answers 5
In my office we have used elure (the brand name uses a lower case 'e') since late December 2010 and have given it to over 30 patients. The follow-up is short and the "sample" is relatively small, but not one has reported improvement using this product. We are disappointed but prescription products containing hydroquinone are still available and remain the gold standard for treating unwanted skin pigment. There are several of these creams and they are not equally effective. Check with your dermatologist for a recommendation best suited for your skin problwm and your skin type.
Rx Strength Hydroquinone is Best for Lightening Spots
Prescription strength 4% hydroquinone is better than any OTC product, including Elure, for lightening dark spots in the skin. These dark spots are typically due to chronic sun damage so daily use of sunscreens is essential in your treatment. Combining prescription-only tretinoin cream with hydroquinone will make it even more effective. Therefore, the most effective way to reverse the effects of chronic sun damage to your skin is by using a combination of these two prescription strength medications: tretinoin cream and 4% hydroquinone. Unlike the unsubstantiated claims made by over-the-counter skin care products, the results of using these creams are backed by real medical science. I recommend the Obagi Nu-Derm System which uses both tretinoin cream and hydroquinone to visibly lighten age spots as well as the fine lines and wrinkles that are due to chronic sun exposure.
Our choice for skin lightening creams - Melarase AM and Melarase PM
There are many creams to lighten the skin, including Elure. I emphasize creams that are effective tyrosinase inhibitors such as Melarase for lightening skin and hyperpigmentation.
Raffy Karamanoukian MD FACS
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"elure" can be helpful for pigment
I started offering elure to my patients 2 months ago. I started with the toughest melasma patients, those who had not done well with peels, tretinoin and 4% hydroquinone and wanted a "drug holiday" from the stronger meds. Two patients on elure alone did not do well and I restarted the tretinoin and 4% HQ in addition to the elure. Not enough time has passed to give you an assessment.
In the last 2 months I have started about 25 patients with mild to moderate hyperpigmentation from sun (not melasma). Many of these patients have seen improvement already and are very happy.
So, the value of having multiple methods of treating pigment is clear. Elure is an enzyme that breaks down preexisting pigment and gives fast improvement in some patients. HQ is a mainstay of treatment yet far from perfect (it has been banned is some countries because of concern over risks). It works by inhibiting the production of new pigment. I recommend you try the elure, you can always go to stronger treatments if your dermatologist thinks it is appropriate.
Skin lightening with Elure
Before begining any skin lightening treatment, be sure to be evaluated by your dermatologist first. You want to be sure you are only treating sundamage and not moles.
There are several options for skin lightening currently. One long standing option is hydroquinone. This is a prescription medication. The way in which this topical medicine works is by helping to prevent any further pigmentation from developing in our skin. Hydroquinone can be irritating to the skin and if used longer than recommended can lead to a grey pigmentation in the skin.
A new topical therapy for skin lightening is Elure which is an enzyme based topical that works by breaking down pigment that already exists in our skin. This is a very different way of reducing pigment compared to hydroquinone. Clinical trials have demonstrated this topical to be less irritating and safe. We have been using this topical since the release and have very satisfied patients seeing improvement in their skin rather quickly. This topical can be obtained in certain doctors offices.
There are multiple other over the counter lightening creams however, effectiveness is limited.
Depending on the reason you developed pigmentation in your skin would determine which therapy is most appropriate for you and in some cases combination treatment is needed.
Regardless of which treatment you undergo, sunscreen and protecting your skin from UV exposure is a critical component to maintaining your results