Dark Skin - Patients ask Dr. Ringpfeil answers
Please feel free to use the blog below to share information about Dark Skin or to ask Dr. Franziska Ringpfeil a question that might be of interest to others.
Training and working at four inner city university hospital in NYC and Philadelphia we are fortunate to have the opportunity and experience to treat a broad range of skin of diverse ethnicity. People of different origin have indeed significant differences in the composition of their skin. On one hand darker pigment protects our skin from the sun but on the other hand inflammation of the skin may result in significant unwanted discoloration. As darker skin runs into a potential risk of discoloration, different lasers, procedures, and medications may be appropriate to safely and effectively treat not only medical but also cosmetic conditions.
As a large portion of our patients is from diverse and mixed ethnic background, we invested in technology that is specifically suited or even "color blind". We provide peels that correct dark pigment, we remove dark "moles" (dermatosis papulose nigra ), we treat keloids with unique cryoshape technology and more
Keloids are genetic condition that is more common among black and mediterranean. For more information about keloids and treatment of keloids visit our keloids page.
Treating acne scar on dark skin requires special considerations. Improper treatment can results in permanent damage to the skin without improving the scar texture. Fortunately, there are now two new technologies that allow us to treat scars with minimal risk of damaging the healthy skin around the scar. Our Picosure laser can safely soften the scar tissue and a following treatment with Infini microneedling triggers colligen production that elevates the skin in the scar area. We have recently developed a new treatment protocol for darker patients that can now benefit from results that were not be possible before.
It is important to control the inflammation caused by acne as early as possible in order to prevent post inflammatory hyper pigmentation. Similarly, It is also important to avoid irritating topical medications. Those who had difficulty managing their acne and were left with dark marks that can be focal or widespread, can go through Picosure laser, microdermabrasion, Photodynamic therapy, Melanage treatments to lift the dark pigment and restore the original and lighter complexion.
Safe and effective laser hair removal is not available for dark skin. The NDYag laser achieves permanent hair reduction of 80-90% of the hair in 6-8 treatments, other laser types may be less effective and in some cases may impose hyper and hipo pigmentation risk.
The diode laser (Often referred to as "the laser that treats all skin types") requires more treatments and is not suiteable for darker Indian or African American skin types. Hair removal with IPL carries high risk of hyperpigmentation with a very low hair reduction effectiveness. Hair removal with the alexandrite laser should never be performed on a mediternnian or darker skin.
See more information about laser hair removal for dark skin click here