JustAnswer Blog: Health

You are here

Can my dark age spots be lightened or removed?

Woman's face covered in white mask-like substance.

One option: Vitamin C treatment. (Photo: Flickr/TheGirlsNY)

Can my dark age spots be lightened or removed?

August 30, 2012

Q: Can dark spots on skin with age be removed or lightened permanently? The age spots on my face are flat; the ones on my back are raised. I just want to know if brown age spots can be lightened or removed before I invest in advertised products.

A: The spots you are describing sound like solar lentigines and seborrheic keratosis. Both of these classify as "age spots" and are harmless. No over-the-counter product can really help with these. Such products contain various combinations of skin lighteners, retinol, and vitamin C and these are only effective in freckles and very superficial pigmentation.

What age spots require is removal with a laser or radiofrequency device followed by maintenance with a prescription cream like Retin-A micro 0.04% once at night and an SPF 50+ sunscreen 2-3 times per day. The flat spots can also be helped with deep chemical peeling. All of these procedures are done by dermatologists.

-- Answer by Dr. Nair, dermatologist on JustAnswer.

Daily Answer is excerpted from the JustAnswer archives and features information provided by a Expert on JustAnswer.

Other medical questions? You can ask a doctor on JustAnswer, at http://www.justanswer.com/medical