Lee et al developed a simple screening test that can identify an Asian patient at risk for postprocedural hyperpigmentation. The authors are from Yonsei Star Skin and Laser Clinic and Chung-Ang University in Seoul.

Patient selection: Asian


Outcome: hyperpigmentation after a procedure (surgery, laser treatment, chemical peel)


Exam: skin color over the dorsum of the second through fifth fingers


In patients who develop hyperpigmentation the skin over the middle and proximal phalanx tends to be show a lower tone compared to the skin over the knuckles and distal phalanx.


In patients who do not develop hyperpigmentation the visible tone is uniform over the entire dorsum of the hand.


Hypothesis: The skin over the joints is subject to more abrasion/trauma and so more likely to darken in a person prone to develop hyperpigmentation.


If this logic is true, then the patient should be examined for other sites of trauma or surgery to see if they show hyperpigmentation.

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