These birthmarks are called benign pigmented lesions, even if it's just a mole or freckles. Some birthmarks are more prominent pigmented lesions that can be bothersome, especially if on the face, neck, or other visible area.
Age spots are caused by excessive exposure to the sun and most adults eventually get them. Some women develop pigmented lesions (age spots) from the hormonal changes caused by pregnancy or birth control pills.
Prior to the development of laser technology, there wasn't much you could do about pigmented lesions aside from bleaching or make-up. More recently, dermabrasion, cryosurgery, and other techniques have been tried, but they can leave scarring or a visible white, unpigmented area.
Lasers have revolutionized treatment so that many pigmented lesions including age spots can be virtually erased.
What can you expect? Removing age spots may take only one or two laser treatments, while other types of lesions or birthmarks can take more sessions. These 15 to 30-minute sessions are usually spaced several weeks apart.
Most patients do not require anaesthesia during the procedure and describe the laser treatment as feeling like "a series of light snaps with a rubber-band". Downtime after treatment is minimal and often not necessary at all.