Does Pulsed Dye Laser Permanently Cure Hyperpigmentation Caused by a Chemical Peel?

My mother had flawless skin that was unaffected even when exposed to the heat of the sun. but she got a chemical peel done 2-2.5 years ago. since then she has developed hyperpigmentation that doesn't go away. She has been using sunblock, Obagi creams and has been getting monthly laser treatments religiously. The pigmentation goes away but returns with even a single pimple or the slightest exposure to sun or heat. Will pulsed dye laser cause this persistent hyperpigmentation to vanish forever?

Doctor Answers 1

Pulsed dye laser will not have much effect on pigment caused by chemical peel

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It seems from your description that your mother is having a complication called post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation.This occurs as a result of an inflammatory process in the skin. The pigment cells make more pigment,trying to protect the skin when it becomes irritated.If the pulsed sye laser is being used to target capillaries that will have little benefit by itself.If it is being used to target brown pigment it may cause too much irritation in the skin and then start the process over again as it heals.Generally a combination of topical creams as well as lasers are necessary, but this is a complex problem and requires real expertise on the part of the treating physician. My choice of laser in this situation is the Fraxel thulium(which is sometimes called the Dual ) .Both the laser treatment and the creams used must be very gentle and you cannot expect rapid improvement

San Diego Dermatologic Surgeon

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