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melasma

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clinty
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Fri Oct 03, 2008 3:33 pm      Reply with quote
Hey everyone. I hope I'm doing this properly.
I'm a melasma victim and thought it would be great to talk to others who are also bitter about this. please someone let me know i'm doing the right thing here.
bethany
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Fri Oct 03, 2008 3:45 pm      Reply with quote
Hi Clinty, and welcome to EDS!

If you want to share what you are currently doing to treat your melasma, I am sure EDS members would be glad to give you some feedback.

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clinty
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Fri Oct 03, 2008 4:13 pm      Reply with quote
Thanks Bethany. First of all, I would like to whine if that's OK. Up until 2 years ago I had perfect, flawless white skin, not I have this horrible stuff on my forehead and a bit on my cheeks. I stopped using my contraception but I can't continue this as I am in a s-active realtionship. It's like God is punishing me for having premarital nookie (can;t say the S word on this site Smile
Anyway, went into a pharmacy in Huatulco, Mexico the other day and the pharmy recommened this cream called Clioquinol (which is a fungal cream) but this is what the mamacitas use.
Anyone who can help with this please???
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Sat Oct 04, 2008 6:28 am      Reply with quote
Hi, clinty.
Here is an article with an oversight of the most effective and commonly used ingredients to treat hyperpigmentation. Hydroquinone is known to be the most effective agent, but there are other, less controversial ingredients that can also lighten brown spots. HTH.

http://www.smartskincare.com/conditions/pigmentation/hyperpigmentation-treatments.html

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Coconut
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Sat Oct 04, 2008 6:51 am      Reply with quote
clinty wrote:
Thanks Bethany. First of all, I would like to whine if that's OK. Up until 2 years ago I had perfect, flawless white skin, not I have this horrible stuff on my forehead and a bit on my cheeks. I stopped using my contraception but I can't continue this as I am in a s-active realtionship. It's like God is punishing me for having premarital nookie (can;t say the S word on this site Smile
Anyway, went into a pharmacy in Huatulco, Mexico the other day and the pharmy recommened this cream called Clioquinol (which is a fungal cream) but this is what the mamacitas use.
Anyone who can help with this please???


LOL at your response.

I personally would stay away from hydroquinone if you can avoid it, as it has caused all the damage to my skin that I'm dealing with now. I've never heard of using an anti-funal before. I'd be concerned with safety, but it sounds interesting.
Mariav
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Sat Oct 04, 2008 7:12 am      Reply with quote
Hi Clinty -

Welcome, and hang in there - you are NOT alone! I have melasma too - not even caused by BCP, pregnancy, etc. - just decided to appear - I'm guessing hormone changes that started at 40! Lucky me!!!

More and more I've been reading that doctors (who actually give a crap about this condition and don't just prescribe HQ laden creams) are looking into melasma being a fungus that appears when something in our bodies goes out of whack - liver, adrenals, thyroid, hormones - whatever - so maybe you're onto something with the anti-fungal cream.

Dr. Johnson of Osmosis has just created a melasma kit that specifically targets fungus - as a matter a fact the kit has anti-fungals that you take.

I will tell you that over the years I have tried hundreds upon hundreds of dollars worth of "cures" - and nothing works - Vitamin C is helpful - and that's all I would use - the only product that even touched it was the original formula of Cosmelan (by Mesoesthetic)but they changed the formula and it is now useless. Mine came back anyway once I stopped using it - and I wasn't about to spend another $200 on a cream that no longer worked.

Through JoElla Milan - (who sells both Karin Herzog and Osmosis products) I have ordered the melasma kit and will chronicle its effectiveness or lack there of.

What is the most frustrating about melasma is the contributing factors - some of us get it on the pill, some don't - some get it while pregnant - some don't - some get it while pregnant and that have it disappear once they deliver - some get it while pregnant and it hangs around and never disappears - you see where I'm going with this - it's a damned nuisance, it's frustrating b/c most dermatologists do not care about it and no one seems willing to invest the time (or money)to get to the bottom of it (I bet if it was a man's problem they'd be all over it! Rolling Eyes ).

Best of luck to you - and again - there are thousands of us with this, so don't feel alone.

Another great source of info is the skincarerx.com melasma board and melacor.net. On melacor.net, there is a wonderful person named Nancy, who like us, wants to find the core root of the condition and has been working with doctors to get to the bottom of it. She's a gem - and she has melasma - so you know she's as invested as getting rid of it as we are.

Maria Very Happy

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DuchydeKenny
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Sat Oct 04, 2008 10:48 am      Reply with quote
Mariav! This kit sounds great. Please let us know when you get it.

I've been working on my spots for the past 2 years. Hydroquoinine (sp) has helped a bit, so has Tazorac, but NOTHING is taking them away.

Interesting that it could be a fungus. Weeks before my melasma appeared, it felt very itchy under these areas. Almost like something was crawling around. Hard to explain. And then voila, 2 brown spots appeared.
bethany
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Sat Oct 04, 2008 11:14 am      Reply with quote
Mariav wrote:
Dr. Johnson of Osmosis has just created a melasma kit that specifically targets fungus - as a matter a fact the kit has anti-fungals that you take.


Interesting...I have had a systemic yeast infection (which is a fungus) for 15-20 years. I have been through some very aggressive anti-fungal treatments for that, and they haven't done a darn thing for my pigmentation. I'll be interested to hear about your results!

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Mariav
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Sat Oct 04, 2008 3:13 pm      Reply with quote
DuchydeKenny wrote:
Mariav! This kit sounds great. Please let us know when you get it.

I've been working on my spots for the past 2 years. Hydroquoinine (sp) has helped a bit, so has Tazorac, but NOTHING is taking them away.

Interesting that it could be a fungus. Weeks before my melasma appeared, it felt very itchy under these areas. Almost like something was crawling around. Hard to explain. And then voila, 2 brown spots appeared.


What I find strange is that there is a slight but definite difference in my skin texture from where the melasma is to where my spot-free skin is. I'm not trying to be boastful - but before melasma popped in to say hello and never left - I had really lovely skin (thanks to good Italian genes!) and now it's just so blotchy - it drives me crazy. But as I said - in certain lights you can see a texture difference which maybe lends itself to the fungus theory - who knows - if you look at Bethany's post, she's been treated with anti-fungals and her melasma is still with her. It's quite the mystery this stuff.

Maria Laughing

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clinty
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Sun Oct 05, 2008 9:02 am      Reply with quote
Hello all! It's so nice to have other people to talk to about this. Mariav, I hear you girl!
Amongst, ALL the other stuff(menstruals,child birth,menopause,etc.) women have to put up with there's also this! Men have it so easy. And I'm only 30! Now I've spent hours trying to "figure out" what other products I should try in case this "fungal cream" doesn't work out and I've read loads of rave reviews of this Mama lotion, also Obaji and Triluma. The Mama seems to work well for some and for a few has the exact opposite effect. Anyone have any ideas on natural remedies, and also could someone tell me if the IUD contraceptive can cause melasma. I might consider that as I'm not ready for a baby now and cannot stay off the pill.Thanks again to all of you Smile
taobunny
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Sun Oct 05, 2008 8:06 pm      Reply with quote
Hi Clinty,

I'm new here too - and I'm so glad I've found this forum!

I so feel your pain - as melasma is the thing I hate MOST about my face...

I've tried everything (it seems) from Fraxel (lightened some spots - CREATED some others...), hydroquinone, Renova, MaMa lotion, etc, etc...

So far, I've lightened only my wallet - and nothing's really helped.

Currently, I'm just starting with the dermaroller and Vitamin C serum to see if that will help.

Coconut - Could you please elaborate on what happened with you with hydroquinone???? Now I'm scared!

Thanks Clinty for starting this thread - as I'm going to keep checking to see if anyone has a solution to this problem!!
Gayle
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Mon Oct 06, 2008 1:41 pm      Reply with quote
I don't know, but I have a suspicion that the real reason for this is from the INSIDE, and that whatever will turn out to help it will be from an internal means. I've got a feeling that there is little that a topical treatment will do in the long run.

I also think there needs to be a lot more research for it.
lucyluc
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Tue Oct 07, 2008 5:30 am      Reply with quote
This dreaded malady is one of the most difficult skin conditions to treat. Asians,hispanics, italians are most affected by it. If you are lucky enough to have some success in treating it ;it will come back even worse if you go in the sun.I have suffered from this for years,finally was able to get rid of most of it and I never let the sun hit my face if I can help it;hence it has not returned.
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Tue Oct 07, 2008 2:36 pm      Reply with quote
Hi Clinty, et. al

Have you ever read the posts about MSM- the supplement taken in conjunction with Vit. C? It apparently has the capacity to lighten skin- exactly where the pigment appears darker- i.e. it evens out the complexion.

I myself have become an MSM devotee- but mostly because it seems to alleviate my chronic allergy problems.

Perhaps you could investigate this avenue? I´m sorry, but I didn´t find the appropriate threads- but you could easily do a search here.

Flannery

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taobunny
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Tue Oct 07, 2008 3:24 pm      Reply with quote
Sorry Clinty for hi-jacking your thread... Sad

But, at the risk of looking really dumb, Flannery - what is MSM? (I looked on the acronyms page first and couldn't find it...)

Thanks!
Diana P
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Tue Oct 07, 2008 3:38 pm      Reply with quote
Here is the MSM thread. http://www.essentialdayspa.com/forum/viewtopic.php?tid=20364
I started taking MSM for pigmentation on my face. I'm not sure if it is melasma or hyperpigmentation or both. Areas of the skin on my face has darkened gradually over the years, particularily under my eyes and my upper lip. I have tried to stay out of the sun, but recently spent 2 days outside with no sunscreen and the areas just seemed to double in darkness overnight. I also had some hormonal changes around that time (quit breastfeeding). It was awful and I immediately started on MSM, NIA24 sunscreen, NA24 skin stregthening complex, and Mama Lotion occassionally. It took about 4 weeks to see improvement and gradually the areas have lightened and are now lighter than the way they were before and are easily hidden with a light brushing of MMU. I am crossing my fingers that they may lighten all the way.
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Tue Oct 07, 2008 3:45 pm      Reply with quote
Thanks Diana! (I love this forum - as everyone's so helpful and quick with answers!!)

I've bookmarked your link - and will read it in full as soon as I get a chance.

< uh oh - looks like yet another supplement I HAVE to add to the regimen! > Very Happy
Mariav
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Tue Oct 07, 2008 6:12 pm      Reply with quote
MSM has really seemed to help in the battle of melasma - supposedly the supplement helps in eliminating toxins from the body and it seems to be a marvel at helping joint pain, helping hair and nails grow strong, helping allergy symptoms, and for some, helping melasma.

My advice would be to make sure that if you purchase MSM it should be OPTI MSM - which is the pure MSM. Also, start very, very slowly with this supplement and work your way up. It can have almost a detox effect if you start off taking to much - you can have symptoms like strong headaches, inability to sleep, anxiety, etc. You have to take a LOT OF WATER with this - drink as much as you can to avoid the headaches. Also the combo of MSM plus C Ester seems to be a very good one-two punch for melasma.

I unfortunately, could not take MSM - no matter how much water I drank and no matter how small the dosage, I got terrible headaches from it and it made me feel "off". Can't explain it.

However - there are those who have taken the MSM and have had clearing - so it's worth a shot!

Maria Cool

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Tue Oct 07, 2008 7:29 pm      Reply with quote
MSM sounds in theory pretty good.....but I found this:

http://www.quackwatch.org/01QuackeryRelatedTopics/DSH/msm.html

so, makes me wonder.
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Wed Oct 08, 2008 9:27 am      Reply with quote
Hi Gayle, I´m certainly not one for believing blindly in homeopathic and natural remedies- I come from a family of medical doctors- so I am extremely skeptical when I am told there are no clinical studies as proof as to the effectiveness of a substance or nutrient. But MSM has been researched- also by the medical community- and there is evidence out there.

I can definitely say that I have experienced definite health improvements from taking MSM. (3 months now) Other perks include stronger finger nails and hair. So far, I haven´t noticed that it lightens pigmentation- but I do have a couple of places I´m watching closely.

Flan

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herama
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Wed Nov 26, 2008 11:18 pm      Reply with quote
Hi,

I've posted in a couple of forums regarding my trying arbutin and azelaic acid (as Skinoren cream) to lighten my melasma. At first I thought it helped, but after a month or so (it's been about that long), I am no longer seeing a difference. Regarding the anti-fungal- I have read extensively on melasma, including all the posts on the great blog "can a leopard change her spots?" (try googling it), and have seen references to such a thing. However, there are many causes for pigmentation. I went out and bought some anti-fungal shampoo, and it did nothing. There's a common fungus that can appear similar to melasma, which can be treated by stuff like Nizoral shampoo. However, that is not the same as the melasma that occurs from hormone imbalance, etc. I'm beginning to wonder if my predilection to yeast infections is realted to the melasma, but I've taken Diflucan many times (didn't even get rid of my yeast infection, despite taking 1- 3 pills in a week for 6 weeks), and I do not recall any lightening of the melasma spots.
Anyway, I'll keep reseraching, but as of yet, I've not found a topical that really, really works( for me).
herama
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Wed Nov 26, 2008 11:38 pm      Reply with quote
I hate that! I posted some links, and got erased! So, I said I can't take MSM- makes me even more dehydrated than usual (I drink a gallon of water minimum per day), and caused horrible insomnia. I couldn't even sleep on Ambien while taking MSM.

My links were for the fungal infection that can mistaken for melasma: tinea versicolor. Google the term, and check it out. There is also a thread on EDS regarding the misdiagnosis of her Tinea Versicolor as melasma. You'll have to do a search, since I can't put the link... >:~\
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Thu Nov 27, 2008 5:21 am      Reply with quote
Have any of you tried IPL treatments? My youngest daughter used to have melasma - she had a "moustache" and very dark patches under the eyes. She had one intense IPL treatment and the patches all dried up and fell off. However, then she went in the sun and they came back (although they weren't as bad as they were). She then had a couple more treatments and her skin is now completely clear. She now NEVER puts her face in the sun and is diligent about wearing sunscreen.

My eldest daughter has now also developed melasma - I think it is hormonal from taking the pill. She has tried all the usual topical treatments and has given up on them. She has now also booked in to have IPL. I'm inclined to think that the melasma comes from deep within the layers of the skin and it takes a more invasive approach to get rid of it. Topical treatments just treat the surface of the skin and, of course, results take much longer.

After an IPL treatment you do look really terrible - all the discolouration turns very dark. However, within a week or two the patches all dry up and flake off leaving the skin clear.
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Thu Nov 27, 2008 12:32 pm      Reply with quote
I can't afford anything like laser/IPL, which is probably for the best right now. In all the research I've done, I've found there are many people for whom IPL makes the melasma worse, and sometimes causes PIH in addition to the already existing melasma. Same with laser. A lot of those that actually had results, found the melasma returned with just slight exposure to sun. There's no way I could afford repeated trials, and since my skin tends towards all kinds of problesm, including Post inflammatory hyperpigmentation, I don't think I'd be a good candidate anyway. I'm glad it helped your daughter. I find that even with heavy physical sunblocks (UV Naturals 30+ with 24% zinc oxide), I still get darkening. I am a serious believer in the "something internal" going on, and with my yeast probs, I'm inclined to think it's somehow all related. Unfortunately, I have no idea what that link is! I have been taking a lot of zinc lately, in hopes of improving my immune system. It helped clear up some acne,but I found myself gettingyeast symptoms. I stopped the extra zinc, and the yeast issue is clearing up. This has happened before. SO much for "copper overload- take more zinc" theory. (which is an internet phenomena often mentioned as a cause of melasma).
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Thu Nov 27, 2008 5:31 pm      Reply with quote
I've also heard of people complaining that IPL has worsened their melasma. However, I think this is because IPL brings the melasma to the surface of the skin and they have not had a strong enough or enough treatments to totally get rid of it. I've had a number of IPL treatments for broken capillaries and have had dark spots come to the surface of the skin that I didn't even know were there. This is sun damage that was lying beneath the skin. However, the patches then dried up and fell off. But, of course, I am NOT an expert on this and before considering any treatment it is best to speak to a number of doctors to get their opinions. As for the cost of IPL, one treatment is usually around AUD$300 - less if a series of treatments is recommended. Compared to what we spend on useless lotions and potions, I think it's money well spent.

Consider Nicole Kidman - have you seen pictures of her when she was younger, before she went to America? Her skin was covered in splotches and freckles. Her skin now looks like a white china plate - I'm sure that this has been achieved with laser treatments. I just wish she'd fess up and tell us all what she's had done!
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