Title: Facial hirsutism treated with the normal-mode ruby laser: results of a 12-month follow-up study.
Authors: Sommer S, Render C, Sheehan-Dare R
Journal: J Am Acad Dermatol 1999 Dec;41(6):974-9
PMID: 10570383, UI: 20040336
Affiliated institution: Leeds Dermatology Laser Centre, Department of Dermatology, Leeds General Infirmary, U.K.
Fifty-one patients of skin type I to IV with facial hirsutism received treatment with the normal-mode ruby laser (950-micros pulse; 4-mm spot; mean fluence, 49 J/cm(2); maximum fluence, 66 J/cm(2)). For each patient, one site was treated once only, and a second site was treated 4 times at 4-week intervals. After 48 weeks, 46 patients were available for assessment. After a single treatment, hair counts were reduced to a mean of 45% at 4 weeks (pretreatment median of 63 hairs down to 26), increased to 80% (median, 51 hairs) at 12 weeks, were 65% (median, 41 hairs) at 24 weeks, and were 59% (median, 35 hairs) at 48 weeks. Four weeks after 3 treatments, the hair counts had reduced to a mean of 30% (pretreatment median of 68 hairs down to 15). Twelve weeks after 4 treatments, the hair counts had increased to 45% (median, 24 hairs) and were 39% after 36 weeks (median, 22.5 hairs). No anesthesia was needed. Treatment tolerance improved with consecutive visits, allowing higher fluences to be used. Hyperpigmentation developed in 9 patients, which had faded completely in 8 patients at the end of the study. One patient showed hypopigmentation. Depressions in the skin below the jaw line developed in 5 patients, which resolved completely within 4 to 32 weeks. We conclude that normal-mode ruby laser treatment is well tolerated and leads to significant improvement of facial hirsutism, which is maintained for at least 48 weeks. Repeated treatments result in greater clinical effects.