Will laser cause hyperpigmentation?
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Doctor Answers 5
Will laser cause hyperpigmentation
Why hyper pigmentation from lasers is a valid concern
Skin often responds to injuries and inflammation with additional pigment formation. You have seen that in your own skin from the inflammation your acne caused.
Lasers "intentionally" injure the skin to force new collagen production. In the course of that intentional injury, there is heat and inflammation - both of which cause pigmentation.
It is highly likely that laser will cause more pigmentation - though it would probably be more diffused.
There are other options for the treatment of scars - eMatrix uses radio frequency instead of laser, and the heat it induces does not pass through the skin layer that contains melanin cells like laser heat does. But there is still some risk of pigmentation. You can pretreat and post treat with melanin suppressors (like hydroquinone, arbutin and others).
Or, you can take a different approach with microneedling combined with pigment suppressors. Microneedling does not utilize heat so you've pretty much bypassed the pigmentation problem that lasers or heat based procedures can cause skins that tend to pigment easily.
With microneedling (now mostly done with automatic pens) you may still get some inflammation, but co-treatment with melanin prevention products and the non-heat nature can help with both the depressed scars and the existing pigmented scars and further reduce post treatment pigmentation issuse. It won't be a quick process, but young skin does improve faster.
Side Effect from Fraxel lasers
Fraxel is a fabulous laser for treating acne scars. However, if you have a tendency to hyper pigmentation, you might want to discuss a test spot with your dermatologist . Depending on your skin type the eMatrix laser might be a better choice for you to treat the scars. Please consult a board certified dermatologist who has a great deal of experience with acne scars and lasers.
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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.