Is there a way to get rid of sun damage spots (lentigoes, etc.) on the body that works?

I have numerous solar lentigines (aka brown spots caused by sun-worshipping in my younger, foolish days)on my arms. I have had a TCA peel, IPL treatment, a NanoLaser peel, trying to fade them. The NanoLaser actually, I think, made them even worse. It seems that it caused new ones to pop out!!! I just knew that treatment was going to work, with all the pain I went having a really bad sunburn. I have started using Retin A on them and also a over-the-counter fade cream. Is there anything that can help these things? I\'m tired of wearing long sleeve shirts. They look even worse when I put sunless tanning cream on them.

Yes – that tan that we all thought looked so great in our 20s and 30s – now looks blotchy and wrinkled later!

In my opinion, trying to spot treat when there are more than about 10 of these doesn’t make sense because the WHOLE area is sun damaged..    So……..if you just treat the spots, they come back, new ones pop up, etc.    Treating the whole area makes sense.    Start with good topicals.

The problem with treating the whole area though with peels is that the skin takes a long time to heal and it quite uncomfortable for weeks.   It’s  hard to function which is what you described above.

The fractionated lasers work the best on these, in my opinion.   Fraxel erbium (1550 & 1927 nm) in particular can be “tuned” to be more gentle or more aggressive.   The roller tip allows a large area to be done at a time and to get it even.

It can be uncomfortable during the treatment, especially those last few passes so preload with Tyelonol or ask your doctor.   It feels like a sunburn after for a few hours.  We use numbing cream for 45-60 minutes before.    The results are good and healing is faster than with peels.   You will need more than one treatment.

Hope this helps,  Dr. I

Dr. Brandith Irwin, MD

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