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Melasma Health Feed

Melasma - All About It!

Dr. Jagatjit Singh 85% (256 ratings)
MBBS, DHMS-Harvard, Masters in Clinical Dermatology
Dermatologist, Chandigarh
Melasma - All About It!

A common skin condition, which causes the discoloration of your skin in patches across the face, melasma is more of a social embarrassment and cause for distress rather than being a serious condition. Although it affects men as well, studies have shown that over 90 percent of patients are women. It is also known as the mask of pregnancy as many pregnant women develop this skin condition.

Causes of Melasma

Primary causes of melasma have been attributed to various hormonal changes within the body. Let's look at some of the factors that may cause this disorder:

  1. Pregnancy: This is often attributed as the leading cause of melasma, the primary cause has often been attributed to hormonal changes that a woman may experience due to pregnancy.
  2. Treatments that may change hormonal balance: Women on contraceptive pills or who have implants such as intrauterine devices may also develop this disorder. This is due to the balance of estrogen and progesterone being changed within the body.
  3. Sun exposure: Continued sun exposure may also lead to melasma. This is due to the activation of melanocytes within the body which starts producing more melanin.
  4. Stress: Long periods of stress on the body can also trigger hormonal changes and cause melasma.
  5. Thyroid problems: If someone suffers from Hypothyroidism or low levels of the thyroid hormone, it can trigger other hormonal changes and also cause this skin disorder. 

It has also been noticed that people with generally a darker skin tone tend to get melasma and it is less common in people with fairer skin.

Certain characteristics of Melasma

Melasma develops in certain patterns which can be easily diagnosed either as spots on the skin similar to freckles or brown patches of skin that grow bigger. Some of these patterns are:

  1. Malar pattern: This grows on the nose and cheeks
  2. Mandibular pattern: Starts growing around the jawline
  3. Brachial melasma: This grows on the upper arms and shoulders
  4. Lateral cheek pattern: Grows on the cheek on both sides of the face
  5. Centrofacial pattern: Nose, upper lips, forehead, and cheeks

Treatment of Melasma

Most women who develop melasma during pregnancy report that it goes away after childbirth. However certain forms of melasma may appear in non-pregnant women due to hormonal changes. Treating the underlying hormonal changes usually, resolves the problem. However certain other methods may be required to resolve the issues such as skin creams, chemical peels, dermabrasion, and microdermabrasion.

1 person found this helpful

Sir, I have brown dark patches on my face (melasma) since last 7 years pls tell me the medications.

Dr. Prashant K Vaidya 94% (12628 ratings)
Diploma In Gastroenterology, Diploma In Dermatology, BHMS
Homeopath, Hyderabad
Sir, I have brown dark patches on my face (melasma) since last 7 years pls tell me the medications.
Since sunlight is one of the biggest triggers for melasma, daily sunscreen use is non-negotiable to keep it at bay. Choose a sunscreen with broad-spectrum protection with an SPF of 30 or higher. Outdoor hats. Broad-brimmed hats help keep rays off vulnerable parts of the face.
1 person found this helpful
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Melasma - All You Should Know About It!

Dr. Neeharika Manchanda 90% (60 ratings)
MBBS, MD - Dermatology , Venereology & Leprosy, DNB - Dermatology & Venereology
Dermatologist, Delhi
Melasma - All You Should Know About It!

A common skin condition, which causes the discoloration of your skin in patches across the face, melasma is more of a social embarrassment and cause for distress rather than being a serious condition. Although it affects men as well, studies have shown that over 90 percent of patients are women. It is also known as the mask of pregnancy as many pregnant women develop this skin condition.

Causes of Melasma

Primary causes of melasma have been attributed to various hormonal changes within the body. Let's look at some of the factors that may cause this disorder:

  1. Pregnancy: This is often attributed as the leading cause of melasma, the primary cause has often been attributed to hormonal changes that a woman may experience due to pregnancy.
  2. Treatments that may change hormonal balance: Women on contraceptive pills or who have implants such as intrauterine devices may also develop this disorder. This is due to the balance of estrogen and progesterone being changed within the body.
  3. Sun exposure: Continued sun exposure may also lead to melasma. This is due to the activation of melanocytes within the body which start producing more melanin.
  4. Stress: Long periods of stress on the body can also trigger hormonal changes and cause melasma.
  5. Thyroid problems: If someone suffers from Hypothyroidism or low levels of the thyroid hormone, it can trigger other hormonal changes and also cause this skin disorder. 

It has also been noticed that people with generally a darker skin tone tend to get melasma and it is less common in people with fairer skin.

Certain characteristics of Melasma

Melasma develops in certain patterns which can be easily diagnosed either as spots on the skin similar to freckles or brown patches of skin that grow bigger. Some of these patterns are:

  1. Malar pattern: This grows on the nose and cheeks
  2. Mandibular pattern: Starts growing around the jaw line
  3. Brachial melasma: This grows on the upper arms and shoulders
  4. Lateral cheek pattern: Grows on the cheek on both sides of the face
  5. Centrofacial pattern: Nose, upper lips, forehead and cheeks

Treatment of Melasma

Most women who develop melasma during pregnancy report that it goes away after childbirth. However certain forms of melasma may appear in non-pregnant women due to hormonal changes. Treating the underlying hormonal changes usually, resolves the problem. However certain other methods may be required to resolve the issues such as skin creams, chemical peels, dermabrasionand microdermabrasion.

3300 people found this helpful

Hi, I am 56 years old and have a melasma patch on left side of the face. I want this to be removed.

Dr. Sathish Erra 87% (10657 ratings)
BHMS, Diploma in Dermatology
Homeopath, Hyderabad
Hi, I am 56 years old and have a melasma patch on left side of the face. I want this to be removed.
Keep your face clean. Whether or not you have acne, it's important to wash your face twice daily to remove impurities, dead skin cells, and extra oil from your skin's surface. Moisturize..Try an over-the-counter acne product. Use makeup sparingly. Watch what you put on your hair.
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I have little melasma on my forehead. So I went to skin specialist she suggested me to take this tablet call Melanie tx OD. Is this is going to help me to remove this melasma or I will get health problem related to my menstural . I am scared and need more info about this tablet.

Dr. Sathish Erra 87% (10657 ratings)
BHMS, Diploma in Dermatology
Homeopath, Hyderabad
I have little melasma on my forehead. So I went to skin specialist she suggested me to take this tablet call Melanie ...
Natural treatment: - Mix together equal amounts of apple cider vinegar and water. - Apply this solution on the melasma spots and allow it to air dry. - Rinse it off with lukewarm water and pat dry the skin gently. Turmeric is a spice that can help your skin's level of melanin and fight melasma.
1 person found this helpful
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Melasma - All You Need To Know About It!

Dr. Vidula Kamath 90% (121 ratings)
MBBS, MD-DNB
Dermatologist, Mumbai
Melasma - All You Need To Know About It!

A common skin condition, which causes the discoloration of your skin in patches across the face, melasma is more of a social embarrassment and cause for distress rather than being a serious condition. Although it affects men as well, studies have shown that over 90 percent of patients are women. It is also known as the mask of pregnancy as many pregnant women develop this skin condition.

Causes of Melasma

Primary causes of melasma have been attributed to various hormonal changes within the body. Let's look at some of the factors that may cause this disorder:

  1. Pregnancy: This is often attributed as the leading cause of melasma, the primary cause has often been attributed to hormonal changes that a woman may experience due to pregnancy.
  2. Treatments that may change hormonal balance: Women on contraceptive pills or who have implants such as intrauterine devices may also develop this disorder. This is due to the balance of estrogen and progesterone being changed within the body.
  3. Sun exposure: Continued sun exposure may also lead to melasma. This is due to the activation of melanocytes within the body which start producing more melanin.
  4. Stress: Long periods of stress on the body can also trigger hormonal changes and cause melasma.

It has also been noticed that people with generally a darker skin tone tend to get melasma and it is less common in people with fairer skin.

Certain characteristics of Melasma

Melasma develops in certain patterns which can be easily diagnosed either as spots on the skin similar to freckles or brown patches of skin that grow bigger. Some of these patterns are:

  1. Malar pattern: This grows on the nose and cheeks
  2. Mandibular pattern: Starts growing around the jaw line
  3. Lateral cheek pattern: Grows on the cheek on both sides of the face
  4. Centrofacial pattern: Nose, upper lips, forehead and cheeks

Treatment of Melasma

Most women who develop melasma during pregnancy report that it goes away after childbirth. However certain forms of melasma may appear in non-pregnant women due to hormonal changes. Treating the underlying hormonal changes usually, resolves the problem. However, certain other methods may be required to resolve the issues such as skin creams and chemical peels.

3966 people found this helpful

I have melasma (butrefly shape) on my face since 3 years, using skin lite but no cure. Can I know better treatment.

Dr. Jayvirsinh Chauhan 93% (15878 ratings)
MD - Homeopathy, BHMS
Homeopath, Vadodara
I have melasma (butrefly shape) on my face since 3 years, using skin lite but no cure. Can I know better treatment.
Take Homoeopathic treatment.. It gives permanent solution. You can consult me through Lybrate.. Till then take .sepia 30
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I am suffering from melasma and I have dark patches on my cheek ,i want to remove all patches please suggest best treatment to how I get rid from melasma?

Dr. Manvinder Kaur 91% (1062 ratings)
PGDHHM, MBBS
General Physician, Delhi
I am suffering from melasma and I have dark patches on my cheek ,i want to remove all patches please suggest best tre...
Skin lightening cream can be used to reduce the dark spots like age spots, freckles, and other skin discolouration.
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Symptoms And Diagnosis Of Melasma

Dr. Nitin Jain 85% (254 ratings)
MBBS, Diploma in Venerology & Dermatology (DVD), DDV, MD - Dermatology , Venereology & Leprosy
Dermatologist, Pune
Symptoms And Diagnosis Of Melasma

Melasma is a common skin problem where the skin becomes patchy brown, tan, or there is blue grey facial skin discoloration. It is also known as chloasma or mask of pregnancy. It occurs in women during the reproductive years and occurs rarely in men. It is primarily related to external sun exposure, external hormones like birth control pills and internal hormonal changes seen during pregnancy. Women with Melasma have a history of daily or intermittent sun exposure.

  • Symptoms of Melasma: Melasma causes patches of discoloration, which are darker than typical skin colour. It occurs symmetrically with matching marks on both sides of face. It normally appears on the upper cheeks, upper lip, forehead and chin. It can also occur on the other areas of one's body which are often exposed to sun. Skin discoloration is not physically harmful, but it can affect the self-confidence of a person. Darker skinned individuals are more at risk as compared to fair skinned individuals. Melasma is associated with oestrogen and progesterone sensitivity, thus it can be triggered by birth control pills, pregnancy and hormone therapy. In few cases, stress and thyroid disease can also cause Melasma. Women taking hormone replacement therapy during menopause are also at high risk of getting Melasma
  • Diagnosis of Melasma: A visual exam of the affected area is sufficient to diagnose Melasma. The doctor will perform the wood's lamp examination that uses ultraviolet (UV) light to look at the skin closely. However, the doctor may perform a biopsy to check for any serious skin conditions.
  • Treatment of Melasma: When Melasma is caused by pregnancy or birth control pills, it disappears on its own. One can use creams containing hydroquinone or prescribed topical steroids, which can lighten the tone of the affected areas. Other options include chemical peels, dermabrasion and microdermabrasion which will remove the upper layers of skin and help lighten dark patches. In cases of severe Melasma, doctor may suggest laser treatments to remove the dark pigment.

It is quite possible that Melasma will clear up with treatment, there are things one must do to not to aggravate the condition and minimize appearance of the discoloration. These include usage of makeup to cover areas of discoloration, wearing sunscreen daily or wearing a hat with wide brim to provide shade to the face. The patients with Melasma are known to be at a lesser risk for Melanoma. Even if Melasma disappears, it can strike back especially if preventive measures regarding exposure to sun are not followed. Resolution with strict sun avoidance and topical bleaching creams can take sufficient time and patients should expect slow, but gradual lightening.

6735 people found this helpful

Melasama - What All Should You Know!

Dermatologist, Pune
Melasama - What All Should You Know!

Melasma is a type of tan or dark skin discoloration in which hyper pigmented patches appear on cheeks, nose, upper lip and forehead. It is also known as chloasma or the mask of pregnancy when it appears in pregnant women causing them to lose their proverbial glow. It is also common among women on the verge of menopause, or those taking patch or oral contraceptives. It also tends to appear in women who are taking medications for hormone replacement treatment. Melasma is more common among women than men with a whopping 90% of women getting it. Melasma is also seen in other parts of the body that is exposed to the sun.

While the discoloration doesn't do any physical harm, it may leave you feeling out of place and self-conscious.

Though it isn't totally clear what causes this problem, the common pattern of the problem in women shows that estrogen and progesterone sensitivity are associated with the condition. Stress and thyroid disease is also known to trigger this condition as both problems lead to hormonal imbalances. Sun exposure is also one of the known causes of melasma as it triggers tanning. Ultraviolet rays also affect the cells responsible for pigments or melanocytes.

Because one of the causes of melasma is hormonal imbalance, it often rectifies itself when the root cause is addressed. For some women it disappears on its own. If this doesn't happen, the doctor may prescribe external creams to lighten the skin. External skin treatment like chemical peels, dermabrasion, and microdermabrasion are also suggested depending on the severity of the condition. These are common skin treatments that strip away the top layer which may lighten the dark patches. Though external treatments can improve the overall appearance, it doesn't guarantee that the dark patches won't resurface again if the underlying hormonal problem isn't resolved. A combination of external and internal treatment can help improve the skin quality and prevent reoccurrence to an extent. During the treatment procedure and afterwards, you'll also have to limit your sun exposure and wear sunscreen regularly.

If you visit a dermatologist, they may mostly use the wood lamp method (a method in which the skin is viewed under a specific light) to determine the depth of your melasma.

Some treatments like those with tretinoin, an acid, cannot be used done during pregnancy.

If you've tried all the above but are yet to find relief, you'll need to find coping mechanisms. You can use concealers and makeup to cover the patch. You'll also need to wear and SPF 30 sunscreen and a big hat that shades your face.

If the disease is affecting you psychologically and you feel self conscious get help from a local support group.

The most important part of skin managment is Sunscreen, sunscreen and sunscreen. STRICTLY AVOID STEROID CREAMS OR TRIPLE COMBINATION CREAMS like MELALITE COSMELITE AND MANY MORE. It will give quick results and then you will get sensitive skin, white patches or vitiligo type skin unwanted hairs over face, thin skin and telangiectasia etc and also u become addicted to these creams. 

Always consult a qualified dermatologist.

4782 people found this helpful
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