“Café-au-Lait” Spots

What is a “café-au-lait†spot (“coffee with milk†spot)?

A café-au-lait spot is a flat light to dark brown patch that can be present on any part of the body. It may be present at birth (usually barely noticeable), but it is usually much more visible after 2 years of age. The child can have one or more such spots.

What is the cause of “café-au-lait†spot?

The cause is unknown, but if many spots are present then they can be caused by a genetic disorder such as neurofibromatosis.

Should I take my child to a health care provider?

It is always wise to see your baby’s health care provider for an initial exam and for a correct diagnosis. If your child has 6 or more of this spots… or if your child has freckles in armpits, and/or in groin, then it can be a sign of genetic disorder called neurofibromatosis.

Is “café-au-lait†spot painful to my child?

 “Café-au-lait†spot is not painful.

My child has “café-au-lait†spot, so what is the treatment?

No treatment is needed. If it is really cosmetically bothersome, then various lasers (pulse dye laser, Er:YAG, QS Nd:YAG, QS ruby laser and QS alexandrite laser) can be used with mixed results.

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