Previous studies have reported the benefits of low-level/light laser therapy (LLLT) for the promotion of hair regrowth. However, the effectiveness of LLLT for the treatment of androgenetic alopecia (AGA) is still a topic of debate.
To investigate the efficacy and safety of LLLT on hair regrowth in patients with AGA.
This 24-week, randomized, double-blind, self-comparison, sham device-controlled trial enrolled 100 patients with AGA. All participants were randomly assigned to receive the investigational LLLT on one side of the head and sham light treatment on the contralateral side, 3 times weekly for 30 minutes each, over a 24-week period. Global scalp photography, phototrichogram assessment, the investigator's global assessment (IGA) of hair regrowth, and the subject's assessment of the treatment satisfaction were used for evaluation.
After 24 weeks of treatment, the LLLT-treated scalp exhibited significantly greater hair coverage than the sham light-treated side (14.2% vs. 11.8%, p < .001). A significantly greater improvement from baseline in hair thickness, hair count, hair coverage, and IGA were also observed in the LLLT-treated side than in the sham light-treated side at the 12- and 24-week visits. No serious adverse events were observed.
The use of LLLT might be an effective, safe, well-tolerated treatment for AGA.
*Institute of Biomedical Engineering, College of Medicine and College of Engineering, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan;
†Department of Dermatology, Cathay General Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan;
‡Statistic and Informatics Department, Providence University, Taichung City, Taiwan;
§Department of Dermatology, National Taiwan University Hospital and Department of Dermatology, College of Medicine, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan;
‖Research Center for Developmental Biology and Regenerative Medicine, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan;
¶Graduate Institute of Clinical Medicine, College of Medicine, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan;
**Department of Dermatology, National Taiwan University Hospital Hsin-Chu Branch, Hsinchu, Taiwan
Address correspondence and reprint requests to: Hsien-Yi Chiu, MD, PhD, Department of Dermatology, National Taiwan University Hospital Hsin-Chu Branch, NO. 25, Lane 442, Sec. 1, Jingguo Road, Hsinchu City 300, Taiwan, or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Supported by the WELLMIKE Technology Corporation, New Taipei City, Taiwan (the owner of the iRestore device) and supported in part by the National Taiwan University Hospital (VN106-13 to SJL) and the National Taiwan University Hospital Hsin-Chu branch (107-HCH009). The study researcher and study design, data collection, data analysis, interpretation of results, and writing of the manuscript were independent of funding sources.
H.-Y. Chiu, Y.-P. Cheng, and S.-J. Lin conducted the clinical trial and received a principal investigator (PI)/Co-PI fee from the WELLMIKE Technology Corporation, New Taipei City, Taiwan. The remaining authors have indicated no significant interest with commercial supporters.
S.M.-Y. Fan and Y.-P. Cheng have equally contributed.
Each individual named as an author meets the journal's criteria for authorship.
The study protocol was reviewed and approved by the local institutional review board of the National Taiwan University Hospital (201310067DSB) and the National Taiwan University Hospital Hsin-Chu branch (102-026-F).