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Brown patches on my face

(13 Posts)
HPonEverything Tue 26-Jul-11 21:26:32

For 3 years now I have had brown patches on my face - my entire forehead, to the outer sides around my eyes, and a dark line around my lips (looks like permanent lipliner). It's permanent but gets much worse when I've been out in the sun. Foundation doesn't really cover it effectively, and I'm very conscious of it.

I've had it for about 3 years - it first appeared after a very sunny holiday - but I didn't have a doctor so didn't get it sorted. My DH convinced himself I had skin cancer and a friend's wife had the same issue which turned out to be skin cancer, so I finally went to see a doctor a couple of months back.

She didn't take me particularly seriously and didn't know what it was but said if it was skin cancer I wouldn't have had it for 3 years. She showed me pics on the internet of what she thought it might be (something fungal), but it looked nothing like my problem and she also said that it rarely appeared on the face! She palmed me off with a facewash that I used religiously and didn't work. I've been back again and been palmed off with a cream.

I saw an episode of Embarrassing Bodies with a guy who had something that looked very similar and they mentioned Hyperpigmentation but when I told the doctor this she just didn't listen.

Has anyone had this issue, I feel like the GP isn't taking me seriously at all so I'd like to know if there's something I can do/buy for myself to get rid of it.

ChristinedePizan Tue 26-Jul-11 21:30:58

Did it happen during/post-pregnancy? There is a facial discolouration that can be caused by pregnancy, usually called a pregnancy mask.

My mum has a brown splodge on the end of her nose which she has had hours of expensive and painful laser treatment on which has worked for a bit but the splodge has always returned. About 2 years ago, she started putting Clinique Dark Spot Corrector on every day and now it has completely vanished!

It's expensive but it is worth a go I'd say smile

HPonEverything Tue 26-Jul-11 21:34:25

Oooh thanks I will give that a go, definitely.
I'm pregnant at the moment funnily enough so my GP says she won't give me anything oral (though since she hasn't established what it is I don't see how she can), but it's my first pregnancy so didn't appear as a result of a pregnancy

RichTeaAreCrap Tue 26-Jul-11 21:35:44

The pill can cause this too, skin discolouration. When I was on it I got dark patches across my forehead too (luckily I had a fringe!). They cleared up eventually when I came off it.

I'd go back to doctors, or go to another one for another opinion, your sounds very dismissive.

branstonsandcheese Tue 26-Jul-11 21:37:49

Melasma - look familiar? I have a patch under my right eye and the lipliner thing on the right side of my top lip! Am using dermalogica's Pure Light and will get some dark spot corrector after ChristinedePizan's comment!

HPonEverything Tue 26-Jul-11 21:38:02

I've only been on the pill for about 6 months in my entire life (it made me fat grin ), so it's not that.

I think you're right I need to try a different doctor!

HPonEverything Tue 26-Jul-11 21:41:35

hmm branston, that's interesting. does the Pure Light work well?

my patches are more 'mottled' but from reading the blurb a lot of it adds up especially the genetic predisposition (my mum has dark patches which I had put down to age, I must ask her how long she's had them)

branstonsandcheese Tue 26-Jul-11 21:52:01

I haven't been using the pure light long enough to be definitive but it is very very effective as a sunscreen and makes my face look brigher (it is very slightly skin-toned so you don't get that white greasy look that can happen with some high factor sunscreens). I got a huge telling-off for not using sunscreen regularly and it suits my sensitive skin very well.

sancerrre Tue 26-Jul-11 21:57:50

Sounds like melasma. I have it due to sun exposure but was told it could be hormones too. Try seeing a dermatologist instead of a GP. I was presribed a very expensive cream for it but haven't used it frequently enough to make a difference. It just comes back if you don't treat the cause anyway. You can also have a chemical peel to get rid of it in one go but you have a peely red face for a week afterwards so can't really go out anywhere.

notnowImreading Tue 26-Jul-11 22:12:02

I have something similar that started when I changed to a pill that didn't suit me. I when I come back from holiday (gets much worse in the sun) I have a couple of dermalogica chroma-white facials and it does fade quite a lot. The beauty lady I go to is quite happy to pile on the stuff that's not quite a chemical peel and give me a very vigorous scrub with something that looks like a dremel multibit. Apparently, using a serum is good too as it encourages the cells to replace themselves, but once I've paid for a facial I'm too stingy to buy products.

HPonEverything Wed 27-Jul-11 08:03:44

It's great to hear people have found solutions to get rid of it - thanks all. I think I need to get to a dermatoligist. I'd do anything to be honest - chemical peels, laser treatment, buy and try anything. I feel something of a freak and feel it's very obvious and makes me look about 10 years older than I am. When I got home after a holiday one of my friends literally pointed and laughed at my face blush

A friend of mine has brown patches on his hands and face, diagnosed as something like 'impisiligo'. His doc said there is nothing that could be done and he was prescribed very heavy make-up to cover it up for the rest of his life grin Needless to say he'd rather live with the patches than wear make-up.

HPonEverything Wed 27-Jul-11 08:04:08

that laughing icon was meant to be shock

Shutupanddrive Thu 18-Aug-11 15:38:15

I have this too. It got worse with pregnancy, and definitely gets worse in the sun. I had it above my top lip for about 3 years, it did eventually fade and now is hardly noticeable. When I was pregnant with ds2 I got it again, on my forehead and down the sides of my face. I cover it as well as I can with foundation but will definitely try the cream someone mentioned above.
Make sure you wear sunscreen on your face ever if it's not particularly sunny as this will make it worse smile

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