Laser Pigmented Birthmarks Removal
For some men and women, the appearance of a pigmented birthmark may be unsightly. AT Bella Plastic Surgery we use laser as a treatment method to remove pigmented birthmarks.
What are Pigmented Birthmarks?
Birthmark marks can appear anywhere on the body, including the face and scalp. They are usually harmless, but some may need medical attention if they change shape or colour. Birthmarks vary in size from a few millimetres to several centimetres across, and they can be either present at birth or develop during infancy. In some cases, birthmarks may fade with age while others remain unchanged throughout life. Birthmarks exhibit a range of colours including brown, tan, black, pale blue, red or purple and can be flat or raised.
Is this treatment Safe?
Whilst most pigmented birthmarks are benign (non-cancerous), some pigmented birthmarks can develop into skin cancer. Having your pigmented birthmark checked by your practitioner trained in skin cancer detection is essential. When the pigmented birthmark is removed by laser treatment, the birthmark is disintegrated, meaning that the birthmark cannot be sent to pathology for testing. Having your pigmented birthmark assessed for skin cancer, is a mandatory requirement, prior to having treatment at Bella Plastic Surgery
What can I expect in the treatment?
Prior to treatment the area to be treated will be cleansed and a set of clinical photos will be taken. The pigmented birthmark will then be removed within a few minutes with our advanced laser device.
Advantages of Pigmented Birthmark Removal
Patients will seek Laser Pigmented Birthmark removal to avoid the downtime and scarring that is commonly associated with the surgical removal of a birthmark. Laser Birthmark removal does not involve cutting the skin, and therefore, there is no need for sutures, dressing or any other coverings following treatment – the wound is treated as a ‘dry’ wound.
Facial skin typically heals well however, some areas of the body to not heal as well. While some minor scarring can occur after Laser Pigmented Birthmark removal, the treated area will usually appear as a pale white colour, one shade lighter than one’s skin colour and no larger than the birthmark itself. With that said, there is always a risk of the treated are scarring poorly – refer to the risks under ‘Potential Risks’. located below.
How long does procedure take?
While the pigmented birthmark removal procedure takes only minutes, we do schedule at least 30 minutes for your appointment to allow time for you to complete a Patient Registration Form, receive a consultation and discuss the procedure and post-care instructions.
How many treatments will I require?
Our laser technology facilitates the removal of a pigmented birthmark immediately at the time of treatment. In rare cases where there is pigment that lays deep under the skin, a subsequent treatment may be required.
Is treatment painful?
Topical and/or local anaesthetic will be administered prior to your treatment to ensure you are comfortable and experience very little to no pain.
Recovery after treatment
Following your Laser Pigmented Birthmark Treatment, there will be some redness, slight swelling and yellow oozing around the treated area(s) for up to two weeks following your treatment. In addition, a temporary scab will form; this is a natural part of the healing process.
The scab will usually fall off within 14 days, and it is essential to avoid touching or scratching the scab off the treated area. Scratching or picking at the scab can cause inflammation, making any scarring more prominent.
After the scab has fallen off, the treated area will appear red due to new capillary formation. Any redness around the treatment area will usually dissipate in a matter of months following treatment.
Even though you have had your birthmark assessed as being benign (cancer free) by your skin cancer practitioner, there is still a risk of skin cancer being present within your birthmark, at the time of laser treatment.
The laser ablates (burns) away the birthmark, meaning that nothing is available to be sent away for pathology for further testing, so you need to be aware that pathology testing is not possible with this treatment.
Although the potential risks are extremely uncommon, one or more of the following may occur:
- Lightening or darkening of the skin in the treated areas
- Skin crusting or blistering
- Scarring – which includes Hypertrophic or Keloid Scarring
As part of your post-treatment care plan, you will be provided with verbal and written post-treatment instructions.
Following your laser treatment, you may notice redness, bleeding, bruising, swelling and weeping at the site of treatment, which can last for several days to weeks.
It is normal for the treated area to feel a little sore and tender, for a few days post treatment. You will keep the treated area dry and intact following your treatment. We will provide you with a topical cream to be used 3-4 times a day to the treated area, until the area has healed.
- Please refrain from getting the treated area wet until scab has fully fallen-off the treated area.
- Avoid exposing the treated area to the sun for a minimum of 4 weeks following treatment.
- Do not pick as scabbing can lead to scarring.
- Makeup can be used over the treatment area so long as there is no extended redness, blistering or scabbing (mineral make-up is the best option).
- Avoid skin irritants such as hydroquinone, bleaching creams, tretinoin, retinol creams, benzoyl peroxide, chemical peels, glycolic acid, and salicylic acid for at least 2 weeks after the procedure.
- Avoid any rubbing or friction movements on the treated area for three days post treatment.
You will be requested to send an image of the treated area(s) 4 days post treatment via email.
Our clinic can be contacted contact on 1300 373 662 if you experience any inflammatory reaction and/or side effect. If necessary, additional treatments, medications and/or surgery may be necessary. If out of hours, please attend your local medical centre or emergency department.
We will arrange a follow-up appointment for six weeks post-treatment at our clinic. If at any time you have questions or concerns, you should contact our clinic to arrange a face-to-face appointment.
If required, you will be provided with topical cream, designed to be used post skin injury, that will provide nutrients to accelerate the skin healing process. In addition, we also offer Ligh Emitting Diode Treatment (LED) to accelerate the healing process.