Treating sun damage on your chest

Carlos Wolf, M.D.

Carlos Wolf, M.D.

Q: I’m one of those people who loved to sunbathe growing up. My neck doesn’t look great, but my chest is awful. Is there anything out there that can help make this area look more rejuvenated?

A: My first response to you is – are you still going out in the sun? Staying out of the sun is the first step to rejuvenating your skin. Wearing a good sunblock and using a quality moisturizer also are important steps to take. Some people get a nice result by using retinoid compounds on the chest. Care must be taken in this area, so as not to cause any scarring.

Intense pulsed light therapy, or IPL, is one procedure that can help with the wrinkles and discoloration caused by sun damage. It usually takes several treatments and is generally very well accepted by patients.

Another modality that recently become FDA-approved for the chest area is Ultherapy. This noninvasive procedure is FDAcleared to lift skin on the neck, the eyebrow and under the chin as well as to improve lines and wrinkles on the décolletage (chest area).

Ultherapy has been used in our office for many years to tighten the neck and improve skin quality along the face, neck and forehead with excellent results. The key to achieving excellent results is good patient selection. Not every patient is a candidate for this treatment, and I do not believe that this procedure qualifies as a noninvasive facelift. Ultherapy is performed by a physician, an aesthetician or nurse practitioner. Oral medication to sedate the patient may be used, or it may be performed without sedation depending on the patient’s ability to tolerate discomfort. The results are noted soon after the procedure and maximized at about three months. Since this is a relatively new procedure in the United States, long-term results are difficult to determine at this time. And because there are not many procedures to improve the skin on the chest area, this is a very exciting new possibility.

Dr. Wolf’s office is located at 8940 N. Kendall Dr., Suite 903E. He may be reached at 305-595-2969 or at

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