Table of Content


Winter 2009, Vol. 17 No. 4

Hong Kong J. Dermatol. Venereol. (2009) 17, 190-198

Review Article

Light-based treatments for acne

CK Yeung 楊志強 and HHL Chan 陳衍里

Acne is a common skin condition that can lead to significant scarring and psychological disturbance. The existing oral and topical anti-acne medications are limited by efficacy, adverse effects and patients' compliance. Lasers or light sources are explored as therapeutic options for acne. Light treatment targets the function of the pilosebaceous glands and reduction of Propionibacterium acnes that are pathogenic factors of acne. Patients whose acne is resistant to conventional treatments or who are intolerant to their side effects may be candidates for light treatment. Blue light, red light, pulsed dye laser, mid-infrared laser, intense pulsed light, photodynamic therapy have been studied in this regard. Long-term efficacy of light-based therapy is still lacking and careful selection of patients is necessary given its cost and discomfort.