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Definition

Age spots, sometimes called liver spots, are areas of darker skin that often look like large dark freckles. They called liver spots because they were once thought to be a sign of a malfunctioning liver and they are often dark red or brown, the color of liver. They are unrelated to the liver or liver function. They may measure up to 1 inch in size. They are associated with exposure to U.V radiation from the sun and also with ageing. In a very small number of cases, they have been known to obscure the detection of skin cancer. People over the age of forty years of age are more susceptible to it as the skin is less able to regenerate. It is particularly common in people who like to be out in the sun.

Causes

Age spots increase with age and with increased sun exposure. They are more common in people who freckle and who burn easily. Many people have a hereditary predisposition to develop liver spots. Free radicals are unstable atoms in the body that start a domino type effect leading to damage of cellular components such as DNA.

Symptoms

Age spots occur on skin that has had the most sun exposure over the years, such as the backs of hands, tops of feet, face, shoulders and upper back.
Sometimes, a person with sarcoidosis complains of "feeling sick" and may experience fever or weight loss. Sarcoidosis can affect nearly any organ; with the possible exception of the adrenal gland.This disease sometimes causes defoliation in the more humid southeastern states but is not considered a serious disease in Oklahoma. Liver spots are not medically dangerous. They are permanent skin changes that may affect the cosmetic appearance of the skin.

Treatment

The best treatment for age spots is prevention. The key to preventing age spots is sun avoidance and daily sunscreen use. For example, you won’t find age spots on your inner thigh because of minimal or no sun exposure. However, for most of us, it is too late for prevention, and there are a number of treatment options available.

Active ingredient Gatuline® Whitening (a complex lightening ingredient derived by fermentation of Kojic and Lactic acids with licorice extract) helps fade brown marks, freckles, skin discoloration (hyperpigmentation) and evens out skin tones.

Bleaching solutions such as hydroquinone can be useful for people with fair skin, though hydroquinone can sometimes irritate and temporarily redden the skin. This possibility of irritation with hydroquinone makes it unsuitable for people with darker skin tones. It is possible that the irritation associated with hydroquinone can overstimulate the higher concentration of melanocytes found in dark skin types.

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