With sun exposure changes in the skin occurs over time. You will small see vessel forming on the cheeks and nose and small brown patches call solar lentigos. Solar lentigo is a harmless patch of darkened skin. It results from exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation, which causes local proliferation of melanocytes and accumulation of melanin within the skin cells. Solar lentigos or lentigines are very common, especially in people over the age of 40 years. Sometimes they are also known as an “old age spot” or “senile freckle”.
A solar lentigo is a flat, well-circumscribed patch. It can be round, oval or irregular in shape. Color varies from skin-coloured, tan to dark brown or black, and size varies from a few millimetres to several centimetres in diameter. They can be slightly scaly. Solar lentigines are found as groups of similar lesions on sun-exposed sites, particularly the face or the back of hands. They occur in light and dark skin, but tend to be more numerous in fair-skinned individuals.
Solar lentigo is often diagnosed on its clinical appearance. On occasion, it can be difficult to differentiate an irregular solar lentigo from melanoma a potentially dangerous form of skin cancer.
Examination using dermatoscopy can clarify the diagnosis. If there is still diagnostic doubt, a skin biopsy may be performed for histological examination.