After Electrocautery treatments I got dark spots on my face. I tried using 4% Hydroquinone on them but it didn't work. Is Salicylic Acid good? Thank You.
Does Salicylic Acid Work to Lighten Dark Spots?
Doctor Answers 7
Salacylic acid for dark spots
SA is a good choice for superficial skin issues such as sun spots and acne and skin texture. Used in combination with other treatments it can he helpful for other dark spots. The most likely issue you have is what is called postinflammatory hyperpigmentation form the cautery and this would be better treated by bleaching creams (prescription strength). Good luck and save the money on the peels and buy the cream.
Glycolic Acid Peel Better for PIH
While a salicylic acid peel is better for acne, since it scoops the keratin out of the follicle, glycolic acid is a superior peeling agent for pigmentation.
I would also recommend adding a retinoid to your hydroquinone. Oftentimes, increasing the strength to 6% will give a significantly better improvement than 4%. One of my dermatology friends even recommends 10%. I am leery of this strength however, since it can cause irritation.
Other agents such as azelaic acid, arbutin, and kogic acid might also be tried.
Salicylic Acid and Dark Spots
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Salicylic Acid to Lighten Dark Spots
It is best used as an adjutant therapy with:
- Other topical alpha or beta hydroxy acid therapies
Salicylic Acid peels are more like skin treatments or aids to other peeling agents. They work well to dry the skin up for acne control when used alone, but not for pigment or wrinkles.
John Di Saia MD
Salicylic acid chemical peel for pigmentation
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.