Laser Treatment of Pseudofolliculitis Barbae

Dr. Arusha Campbell-Chambers, Dermatology, Jamaica, West Indies

American Journal of Aesthetic Medicine, May 2015

Although traditional lasers and light devices use relatively long pulse durations for hair removal, a novel short pulsed 0.65ms portable Nd:YAG laser has been found to be safe and effective for hair removal.38 In addition, it carries the added benefit of gentler yet efficacious treatment,39 requiring no gels, no skin contact with the laser, no anesthesia and often no cooling.

There have been a number of studies on the efficacy of various laser systems for hair removal and PFB treatment. Some studies suffer from small sample sizes and follow-up is at times inadequate. Most studies use mean lesion count and percentage hair reduction as their measure of outcome.

In a small study using the 0.65ms Nd:YAG laser, one half of each axilla of six female patients was treated and the other side was monitored as a control.38 The treatment sides were treated with a fluence of either 21 J/cm2 or 36 J/ cm2 and a manual hair count was done before treatment and at each follow-up visit. Four months after four monthly treatments, the hair reduction was graded as five (75%-100% reduction) on the high fluence side and four (50%-75% reduction) on the low fluence end by individuals and investigators. On the high fluence side, the average hair count went from 114 to 28 (76% reduction) and in the low fluence areas from 135 to 38 (72% reduction).

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