Melasma is a commonly occurring skin pigment condition that causes small brown and sometimes grayish spots to appear in concentrated patches on the face. While melasma is generally harmless and doesn’t cause any physical discomfort, it can have a significant impact on one’s self-esteem and quality of life.
Studies show that a good skincare routine along with laser treatments like Fraxel and PicoWay can help reduce the appearance of Melasma as well as oral tranexamic acid. With these combination treatments, and patience, you can potentially bring your melasma to a level where it’s no longer noticeable.
Melasma is a skin condition that appears as brown or gray patches on the face. Melasma occurs when your melanocytes become hyperactive and produce too much melanin. A melanocyte is a cell in the skin and eyes that produce and contain the pigment called melanin.
Melanin is what gives your skin its color. While the exact cause of melasma is not fully understood, it is believed to result from a combination of genetic, hormonal, and environmental factors. Additional causes of melasma can be related to pregnancy, oral contraceptives, sunlight, heat, stress, and tanning beds.
Understanding these underlying causes is instrumental in tailoring a treatment plan that addresses the specific triggers and factors contributing to an individual’s melasma. Effective management often involves a combination of treatments and lifestyle modifications to achieve the best results and prevent melasma from worsening.
Since you can’t always pinpoint the exact cause of melasma, it’s quite difficult to find a cure for it. However, while it may not be curable, it is still treatable. Laser therapy has proven to be quite efficient in treating melasma, and some topical or oral treatments can also help reduce its intensity.
The best course of treatment for melasma would be sun avoidance, using a mineral-based sunscreen combined with topical skincare products with hydroquinone, Retinoids, Vitamin C, Kojic Acid, Niacinamide, Alpha Hydroxy Acids, Beta Hydroxy Acids, Azelaic Acid, and Arbutin.
Two advanced laser technologies, Fraxel and Picoway laser, have shown significant promise in the treatment of melasma. These lasers offer precision and targeted therapy to reduce the appearance of melasma while minimizing damage to surrounding tissues.
Fraxel laser is a fractional laser system that works by creating microscopic treatment zones in the skin, leaving surrounding areas untouched. This stimulates the skin’s natural healing process and the production of collagen, resulting in a more even complexion. Fraxel can be effective in treating melasma by breaking down excess pigmentation in the affected areas. Multiple sessions are often required for optimal results, and downtime is generally minimal.
Picoway laser is a picosecond laser that delivers ultra-short pulses of energy to the skin. This high-speed laser technology has been found to effectively target melanin in melasma-affected areas. Picoway laser treatments are known for their quick treatment times and minimal discomfort. Patients often experience visible improvements in melasma pigmentation after a series of sessions.
Oral Tranexamic acid would be the last resort for treatment if the other listed above did not work. It should be considered in cases that other treatment options were unresponsive. Oral Tranexamic acid works by reducing the amount of melanin your skin produces. However, the reduction is not permanent. Taking it slows down melanin production, but only for as long as it is available in the body.
To reduce the melasma, you need to break down the excess melanin that formed the patch. Laser treatments like Fraxel and Picoway as well as topical treatments can offer a localized treatment of melasma, but for a widespread effect, tranexamic acid can also hold potential.
Oral Tranexamic Acid is an anti-fibrinolytic agent. This means it works by slowly blocking the breakdown of blood clots. Therefore, it prevents heavy bleeding. It can also be used to help improve epidermal pigmentation on the skin.
Depending on the dosage used, tranexamic acid can have different effects. A higher dosage can be used for the blood clotting effect, treating patients with heavy menstruation and bleeding problems. On the other hand, a lower dosage has shown the ability to slow down melanogenesis, without the addition of the blood clot.
When prescribed in a low dosage, tranexamic acid can reduce the amount of melanin that your skin produces. This can be very efficient if you just noticed your melasma forming and want to prevent it from worsening.
To see results from this treatment, you can contact Dr. Ostad’s office to book a consultation. Typically, patients are recommended to take a 250mg dosage three times per day for 12 weeks and the effects become visible after about three months. Topical medical-grade skincare or laser treatments can be used to reduce the size and appearance of your existing melasma. Dr. Ostad can recommend chemical peels or lasers like PicoWay® and Fraxel®.
The duration of the effect of oral tranexamic acid can vary from person to person. Melasma is influenced by factors like sun exposure and hormonal changes so the duration depends on the individual. Some people see long-lasting results, while some may find their melasma returns after a few months. If melasma returns, it’s recommended to take it again.
Melasma can be a tricky condition, but it can still be treated. Whether it’s recommended for you to use topical products, laser treatments, or oral tranexamic acid, you can reduce the intensity of the dark patches and make them less visible. Call Dr. Ariel Ostad for an appointment and discover the right treatment for you!
For more information about melasma and how to treat it orally, you can contact Dr. Ariel Ostad at 212-517-7900. He has always obtained beautiful results at his practice on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. Alternatively, you can fill out the online contact form and he will get in touch with you as soon as possible!
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