Aspen, Colorado – Effective options for melasma range from popular peels and lasers to oral and intravenous agents, said Miami-based dermatologist Joely Kaufman, M.D., at The Cosmetic Bootcamp (CBC).
In one study, investigators compared glycolic acid peels, lactic acid and topical vitamin C 20% monotherapy. Half of patients had a 50% reduction in pigment, she said. This figure included 73% of patients using glycolic acid, 50% in the lactic acid group, and 27% using vitamin C alone (Dayal S, et al. J Cosmet Dermatol. 2016;15(4):367-373.).
“So vitamin C does work. And it’s reassuring to see that tried-and-true glycolic acid still has efficacy in the world of pigment,” she said.
Among lasers, she added, “There is some good evidence that perhaps low-fluence, Q-switched, very short pulse rate and picosecond lasers may have a role in treating pigmentation (Yue B, et al. Lasers Med Sci. 2016;31(8):1657-1663.).”
Systemic medications for melasma that are popular in Europe and Asia include tranexamic acid (administered intravenously), antioxidants (IV and oral), plus oral pycnogenol and polypodium leucotomos, she said.
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