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Cafe au Lait

Cafe au lait (CAL) spots are hyper pigmented lesions of varying sizes which may vary in color from light to dark brown. The presence of the lesions could be associated with congenital conditions such as neurofibromatosis. Typically, CAL spots are present at birth, although they may be difficult to appreciate. By the time the child is aged 2-3 years, CAL spots are clearly visible. The size and number of CAL spots increase with patient age. In the newborn period, in the United States, solitary CAL spots may occur in 0.3% of whites, 3% of Hispanics, and in 18% of blacks. However, in childhood, solitary CAL spots occur in 13% of whites and 27% of blacks.Because CAL spots are the result of an increase in melanin (pigment) in the giant pigment cells (melanosomes), the pigment within the cells can be destroyed by certain lasers such as the Alexandrite, Ruby and Nd:YAG laser.