I am anxious to get my spider veins zapped, and although it seems pretty safe I am concerned about that there may be a hyperpigmentation risk. The med spa I am considering keeps asking about my tanning history, which is making me a little concerned. I have light skin leaning just a bit toward olive, and aside from wearing shorts in the summer do not spend time sunning or tanning. Am I flirting with disaster?
Laser Vein Treatment for Olive to Dark Skin
Thank you for your question. It is true that is that not all lasers are safe for all skin types and misuse can result in permanent darkening (hyperpigmentation) or lightening (hypopigmentation) of the treated skin. These changes tend to affect darker skin to a greater degree, however there are lasers that are successful for darker skin types. In our San Francisco Bay Area practice we use an Nd:YAG laser that has been shown to be safe and effective on most skin types. The fact that you are being asked about your tanning history is a good thing. Knowing how one’s skin typically responds to UV exposure and last exposure is part of a thorough pre-laser treatment assessment and useful in determining the appropriate laser treatments and settings. I hope this helps.
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