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Pigmented Lesion

Treatment Time

15-25 Minutes


3-5 Days

Sessions Required


Discomfort Level


At Vancouver Medi Spa the Er:YAG laser is used for the ablation of keratoses, moles, and other pigmented lesions, enabling the removal of the epidermis and superficial dermis in a controlled and relatively bloodless manner.

Lasers are a simple, fast, effective and safe tool for removing a wide variety of benign pigmented lesions, such as freckles, age spots, birthmarks, moles, certain vascular lesions, ephelides, melasma, seborrheic and actinic keratoses.

Clinical studies have shown that Er:YAG lasers are very effective for the treatment of keratoses, with a clinical and histological improvement of up to 93% after just one treatment.

Some of the most common questions that patients ask dermatologists are skin lesions. Skin lesions are remarkably common and the overwhelming majority of them are benign. However where such lesions occur on the face they can be unpleasant and cause distress to many people. Among the most common of such lesions are Seborrheic and Actinic Keratoses, and Nevi (moles).


How does laser work for pigmented lesions?

At Vancouver Medi Spa, We use Er:YAG laser wavelength which targets the uppermost layer of skin, enabling extremely precise, micron layer-by-layer ablation of the epidermis.

The energy of the laser is absorbed by the water content in the skin cells and the tissue can be vaporized. This causes the skin treated to shrink, stimulating the production of new collagen in the dermis.

The overall result is that new skin forms which is smoother and tighter. Our technology enables our practitioners to select various modes of operation, ranging from cold ablation to a combined ablative and thermal treatment, and even a completely thermal, non-ablative skin rejuvenation deep in the dermis.

Laser treatment for Pigmented Lesions like moles works by targeting the melanin pigment found within the melanocytes of the moles. It also works by destroying the pigment in the skin without the need for excision. This process in completed in 3 simple steps:

Step 1 – LIGHT ABSORPTION: The laser produces short nanosecond pulses of intense light that pass harmlessly through the top layers of the skin to be selectively absorbed by the melanin pigment in the lesion.

Step 2 – PIGMENT BREAK-UP: The laser light is transformed into photoacoustic waves which mechanically break up the melanin pigment into smaller particles.

Step 3 – PIGMENT REMOVAL: These particles are then removed by the body’s own immune system, as the skin’s macrophages clear the excess pigment from the area

What are the traditional treatments?

The most common treatment for keratosis and moles is surgical excision. With actinic keratoses and moles your doctor may take a tissue sample in order to carry out a biopsy to test whether it is cancerous or not.

Freezing keratoses with dry ice or liquid nitrogen avoids the need for surgical excision; however, complications of freezing include pigment changes and rarely scarring.

The treatment of most moles usually isn’t necessary although some people may wish to have them removed for cosmetic reasons.

What Is The Shave Excision? 

In this method, the area around the mole is numbed using a local anesthetic and then a small blade is used to shave off the mole close to your skin.

What Is The Punch Biopsy?

Using a device that looks like a cookie cutter your doctor may remove a mole with a small incision or punch biopsy technique.

What Is Excision Surgery?

The mole and a surrounding margin of healthy skin are removed using traditional surgery.

Where are these treatments performed?

All of these procedures can usually be performed in your practitioner’s office and do not take much time. However the results of these treatments range from fair to minimal, with recurrences sometimes occurring.

What are the advantages for this treatment?

The Advantages for You for this treatment is that your  pigmented lesions is quick, sutureless, has a rapid healing time and produces excellent results.

It is suitable for all ethnic skin types. For example, Asian skin is highly sensitive to heat and often hyper-pigmentation can result from using the wrong laser sources or as a result of poor administration of the laser treatment.The Nd:YAG or KTP Nd:YAG laser sources, on the other hand, have been generating desirable treatment results to all ethnic skin types.

Laser treatment of moles is usually progressive often requiring multiple treatments. About 70% of patients who have laser treatments to remove their moles notice a marked improvement.

Newer and shallower moles and scars respond better than older and deeper scars and moles.

Additional studies show that the appearance of moles continues to improve after the treatment, usually between 3 to 6 months after the treatment was given.

What are Seborrheic Keratoses?

Of all superficial lesions seborrheic keratoses are the most common. The exact cause of seborrheic keratoses is unknown but they are most common on the sun-exposed areas of older patients, especially on the face, neck and trunk.

Seborrheic keratoses are usually a brown-black color and may appear crusty or wart-like. It is not uncommon for them to ooze and bleed when irritated. Many people often mistake seborrheic keratoses for skin cancer or melanoma.

Seborrheic keratoses are however completely benign with no malignant potential. Nevertheless many people choose to have them removed for aesthetic reasons. Since they are superficial they can be removed relatively easily.

What are Actinic Keratoses?

Actinic Keratoses are flat, pink, scaly lesions that can develop in sun-exposed areas and are more common in fair skinned patients whose skin has been exposed a lot to the sun. They are most common on the ears, forehead hands neck, and nose. Over time, actinic keratoses can get bigger, thicken, and occasionally become cancerous.

Actinic Keratoses can remain unchanged for years. However they can eventually thicken, itch, and occasionally bleed. When this happens these are signs that the lesions are becoming malignant. Approximately 1 in 50 actinic Keratoses become cancerous.

What are navi lesions?

Nevi are more commonly known as moles. Moles can appear on their own or in clusters, and are usually harmless collections of pigmented cells called melanocytes. They can appear alone or in multiples. Moles are more common on the head, neck and torso and they can vary enormously in terms of size, shape, color and the amount of hair present. Moles can also be present in more obscure locations. Most of us have between 10 to 40 moles.

They usually appear between the ages of 2 and 20 and some may disappear with age. Although many people are concerned about moles most rarely become cancerous. Nevertheless it is important to become familiar with the moles on your skin and if you have any concerns about them to see a dermatologist.

Before & After