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Ask the Medical Expert Archives 2000-2004

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Ingrown Hair
September 2001

Q. I am fair skinned and tan easily. My problem is that I get ingrown hairs on my legs after waxing. When I remove the ingrown, after a few days the scab turns brown and in the middle of the brown spot the skin is a little bit indented and is a pinky/white color. Some spots are just brown. I have these spots here and there from my thighs to my ankles. The spots seem to be worse where there is sun exposure. What can I do to prevent ingrowns and how can I get rid of these brown spots? Hope you can help me.

A. The condition you describe sounds like folliculitis, localized infection around the hair follicles after the waxing. The wax process may be too traumatic for your skin and causing the changes you notice. You may get less reaction from shaving or other hair removal processes. Your doctor or a dermatologist could give you specific treatment guidelines if you go in for an exam.

HELPFUL WEBSITES:

http://www.dermnet.org.nz/index.html

http://www.nsc.gov.sg/commskin/Follicu/follicu.html

http://www.skinsite.com/info_folliculitis.htm

http://www.dermatologychannel.net/follicle/folliculitis.shtml

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