Chloasma on Face Pictures - 22 Photos & Images

Melasma, also known as chloasma, is a the patches of brown to black pigmentation that occurs on the sun-exposed areas of the face. It is a very common condition in women and is more frequently associated with hormonal changes. However, it also occurs in men although rarely. Melasma is known by several names in different languages but is commonly referred to as hormone / pregnancy / menopause pigmentation. In the past it used to be referred to as the veil or mask of pregnancy. The term chloasma is considered to be outdated as chloas– was derived from the Greek word for green, whereas melas– refers to the color black.

Melasma occurs almost exclusively in women with only 5% to 10% of melasma cases occurring in men. It can affect any race group but is more common in darker-skinned individuals with a more light brown skin. The age groups that more likely to be affected varies but it is more commonly seen in women in their reproductive years and menopause and typically in the 30s to 40s. Women who live in areas with intense sun exposure are also more likely to be affected.

Signs and Symptoms. There is a gradual development of hyperpigmentation (darkening of the skin) that arises symmetrically meaning it occurs on both sides. The dark patches are irregular in shape and more likely to occur on the cheeks, forehead, upper lip, chin and somtimes extends to the sides of the neck and shoulders. This pigmentation may present in one of three possible patterns – centrofacial (center of the face), malar (cheekbones) or mandibular (jaw). However, this does not preclude to the development of the patches on any site on the face but it is almost always symmetical (both sides).

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