Some may not even recognize it as a skin condition, as we live in a sunbathing culture where age spots and redness abound. And although poikiloderma is not harmful and is not considered a disease (but rather, a response pattern of the skin), many find it cosmetically displeasing.

Is the condition caused by sun damage? The answer is yes. However, there are other contributing factors. Fortunately, there are treatments for clearing up the appearance of poikiloderma.

Symptoms of Poikiloderma

This skin condition generally shows up where we tend to be most exposed to the sun: on the cheeks, neck, and chest. It is characterized by a few reactions, including:

  • -Hypo/hyperpigmentation
  • -Reddish-brown blotches
  • -Telangiectasia (noticeable blood vessels)
  • -Thinning skin
  • -Hyperesthesia
  • -Mild burning or itching

Additional Causes of Poikiloderma

Aside from excessive exposure to UV light, other contributing factors may include the following:

  • -Having fair skin
  • -Having a genetic predisposition
  • -Going through menopause (the reaction may be correlated to the hormones associated with aging)
  • -Chemicals in perfumes and/or cosmetics that facilitate a photosynthesizing effect, which speeds up aging of the skin

Treatment for Poikiloderma

Laser technology can be used to treat this skin condition. The intensely focused laser light energy has the ability to address subdermal problems with great precision, thereby correcting the cosmetic appearance of the skin. For poikiloderma this can be achieved through two types of laser systems:

  • -VBeam laser uses a wavelength aimed at sealing off the non-functional blood vessels in the case of poikiloderma. Once the body absorbs this broken down blood vessel tissue, it eliminates the surface appearance of telangiectasia and associated redness.
  • -Fraxel laser uses fractional photothermolysis to clear up the pigmentation of the skin and to promote the growth of new collagen fibers. This rejuvenates the skin, making it firm and helping to alleviate the discoloration.