Redness of the Neck and Chest

Have you noticed redness in the skin of your neck and upper chest, perhaps more so as you age?

This common condition has the rather intimidating name of Poikiloderma of Civatte.  It is named for Achille Civatte, the French dermatologist who first described it in 1923. However, it is usually simply called “redness of the neck”.  Dr. Gallacher can treat the skin with lasers to improve the appearance of this condition.



VBeam Pulsed Dye Laser Treatments Danville


VBeam Pulsed Dye Laser Treatments Danville


Symptoms include darkening or reddening of the skin, patches of lighter skin, visible or prominent blood vessels and thinning of the skin of the neck and chest. Rarely, patients report a mild burning or itching sensation. The shadowed area of the throat below the chin is usually not affected.


The exact cause of redness of the neck is not clear, but contributing factors may include:

  • Genetic predisposition (it is more common in fair-skinned adults)
  • Aging
  • Accumulated exposure to the sun
  • Hormonal changes
  • Certain ingredients in cosmetics and perfumes, which can cause photosensitization. (The skin becomes more sensitive than usual to the effects of the sun.)
  • Gender (women are more often affected than men)


As with many things in life, prevention is more effective than treatment. To prevent or avoid worsening this condition, try to:

  • Avoid exposing skin to the sun during peak hours (between 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.)
  • Wear sun-protective clothing
  • Use sunscreen. (We recommend SPF 50+.) You may visit our medical grade skin care products web page. There, you may view products available in our office.
  • Avoid using perfumes or perfumed soap on the affected skin

Laser Treatment To Improve the Appearance

There are no miracle oral supplements or topical ointments to rid you of this benign condition. However, if you wish to seek treatment for cosmetic reasons, the best option for improving the appearance of your skin is laser surgery.

Dr. Gallacher uses the V-Beam Pulse Dye Laser and the Erbium Laser to improve the appearance of your skin. They work by sending an intense yet gentle beam of light into the affected area. This destroys the targeted vessels and stimulates the skin to produce more collagen, improving its texture. Discomfort and downtime are minimal.  Most patients require several treatments for optimal results.