BACKGROUND Various forms of laser therapy including the pulsed-dye laser (PDL) have been reported to reduce acne lesion counts. OBJECTIVE In this study, the benefits and complications when using a 595-nm PDL for the treatment of acne vulgaris were evaluated when comparing a subpurpuric (low) fluence level with a purpuric (high) fluence level. MATERIALS AND METHODS This study was a prospective, single-blinded split-face clinical trial. Inclusion criteria included subjects with moderate to severe facial acne. All participants were treated with PDL, with each half of the face receiving either high or low fluence at 3-week intervals for a total of 4 treatments. Standardized facial photographs were obtained and blindly evaluated. RESULTS Sixty-Two subjects were enrolled with a mean age of 22.3 years. Fifty-five patients completed the study. The results showed a significant decrease in lesion counts compared with baseline after all treatments. However, the study did not demonstrate a statistically significant difference between the fluence parameters. The only treatment-related adverse event was temporary hyperpigmentation. CONCLUSION This study demonstrates that PDL is effective in reducing acne lesions using purpuric and subpurpuric fluences. However, there was no statistically significant difference in acne lesion count between the higher and lower fluences.
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