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Pigmented Lesions: Birthmarks, "Cafe-au-lait,"
Hormonal, and "Age Spots"
We're all born with birthmarks (benign pigmented lesions), even
if it's only a few freckles. And some of us are born with more
prominent pigmented lesions, such as cafe-au-lait spots, that can
be cosmetically troublesome if on the face, neck, or some other
Age spots (solar lentigines), too, can be cosmetically
bothersome. They're caused by excessive exposure to the sun, and
most adults eventually get them. And some women acquire unwanted
pigmented lesions from the hormonal changes caused by pregnancy or
birth control pills.
There used to be little you could do about pigmented lesions.
But now laser technology has revolutionized treatment so that many
pigmented lesions can be virtually erased.
Understanding Pigmented Lesions
Pigmented Lesions are caused by an excess of melanin in certain
skin cells (melanin is the substance that gives skin its color)
Some pigmented lesions, such as cafe-au-lait, hormonal, and ages
spots, are closer to the surface (in the epidermis), while others
are deeper in the skin (in the dermis).
In the past, the only remedy for pigmented lesions was to cover
them with make-up. More recently, dermabrasion, cryosurgery, and
other techniques have been tried, but they can leave a scar or a
visible white, unpigmented area.
VersaPulse®, the New Treatment Option
Now there's the VersaPulse® Aesthetic Laser, is a
state-of-the-art system specially designed to treat a full range of
The VersaPulse Advantage
Pigmented lesions vary in color, depending on the type of lesion
and the natural tone of the person's skin. This means that not
every pigmented lesion absorbs the same color of light. Earlier
lasers emitted only one color of light, often requiring doctors to
use two or more lasers and repeated sessions to treat pigmented
The VersaPulse Aesthetic Laser produces short pulses of a wide
spectrum of light colors to treat the full range of pigmented
lesions. The entire treatment involves no incisions.
What You Can Expect
Removing age or hormonal spots may take only one or two 15 -
30-minute laser treatments; cafe-au-lait spots and other birthmarks
often take more sessions. Sessions are usually spaced 6 - 8 weeks
apart and are performed in the Lourdes Ophthalmology Surgery /
Laser Treatment Center.
The laser treatment itself feels like numerous small snaps with
a rubberband. Most patients do not require anesthesia during the
procedure. Topical or local anesthesia is provided for those who
The appearance of the treated area immediately after a laser
session will vary from patient to patient depending on the extent
of treatment. Immediate after-effects, if any, are minor. They may
include redness, light crusting, or tenderness, all of which
disappear in a short time. Your physician will be happy to tell you
more about your treatment and what you can expect.
For more information, call Lourdes
Ophthalmology Surgery / Laser Treatment Center at