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Board-certified dermatology


Melasma is a discoloration of the skin that tends to appear on the upper lip, the cheekbones, and the forehead. While melasma can also occur in men, it is a condition most commonly experienced by women in their twenties to forties.

Melasma is a complex condition because there are so many different possible expressions. It can penetrate deeply into the skin or it can be superficial. Sometimes the underlying brown or bluish color is thick and confluent. However, it is not unusual for it to be wispy and thin. Some patients respond to laser treatments while others respond to topicals or even peels. In short, melasma can be complex and unpredictable.

The treatment for melasma is dependent on the appearance of the melasma. Our providers design a customized regimen based on each individual case. It is typical to prescribe topical medications as well as laser treatments. While it is uncommon to achieve 100% improvement, most patients notice 50% to 75% improvement.

At a Glance

Dr. Alan Rosenbach

  • Board-certified and fellowship-trained dermatologist
  • Clinical associate professor at the Keck School of Medicine of USC
  • Researcher, published author, lecturer
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