A: First, get a diagnosis! Treatments can vary greatly from person to person. See your dermatologist. Once a diagnosis is made, she will suggest treatment options. In sunny South Florida, flat dark spots on the face are very common. They can be lightened by fading products or chemical peels.
A: It can be difficult even for an experienced dermatologist to look at a lesion and know for sure. A biopsy is often required.
A: In order to make a definite diagnosis, your dermatologist may take a small piece of the lesion and send it to the laboratory for analysis.
A pathologist looks at it under the microscope and sends back a report. Treatment depends upon the diagnosis.
A: Probably molluscum. The cause is a virus and like other viral infections, they are contagious. Although some pediatricians advise leaving them alone, molluscum should be treated to prevent them from spreading.
A: Warts are caused by the HPV virus, which affects the top layers of the skin. They are sometimes called “seed” warts because the blood vessels to the wart produce black dots which look like seeds. The first treatment you may want to try is an over the counter salicylic acid solution or plaster. Sometimes, the wart may just disappear on its own. However, when dermatologic remedies are needed, the wart will be treated with liquid nitrogen, which freezes the wart to cause a blister. Strong acids may also be applied. Any method that seeks to destroy the wart will usually require multiple treatments.