Comparative effectiveness of low-level laser therapy for adult androgenic alopecia: a system review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials
- 21 Downloads
The purpose of this review is to explore the effectiveness of low-level laser therapy (LLLT) in the treatment of adult androgenic alopecia (AGA). A systematic search of studies on LLLT for AGA was conducted mainly in Pubmed, Embase, and Cochrane Systematic Reviews. The standardized mean difference (SMD) in the changes of hair density treated by LLLT versus sham devices was analyzed. The meta-analysis included 8 studies comprising a total of 11 double-blinded randomized controlled trials. The quantitative analysis showed a significant increase in hair density for those treated by LLLT versus sham group (SMD 1.316, 95% confidence interval, CI 0.993 to 1.639). The subgroup analysis demonstrated that LLLT increases hair growth in both genders, in both comb- and helmet-type devices, and in short- and long-term treatment course. The subgroup analysis also showed a more significant increase of hair growth for the LLLT versus sham in the low-frequency treatment group (SMD 1.555, 95% CI 1.132 to 1.978) than in the high-frequency group (SMD 0.949, 95% CI 0.644 to 1.253). The review was limited by the heterogeneity of included trials. LLLT significantly increased hair density in AGA. The meta-analysis suggests that low treatment frequency by LLLT have a better hair growth effect than high treatment frequency. LLLT represents a potentially effective treatment for AGA in both male and female. The types of LLLT devices and LLLT treatment course duration did not affect the effectiveness in hair growth.
KeywordsLow-level laser therapy Adult androgenic alopecia Hair growth Meta-analysis
This study was funded by the Ministry of Science and Technology, Taiwan (MOST 107-2314-B-038-052).
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
- 8.Wang X, Tian F, Reddy DD, Nalawade SS, Barrett DW, Gonzalez-Lima F, Liu H (2017) Up-regulation of cerebral cytochrome-c-oxidase and hemodynamics by transcranial infrared laser stimulation: a broadband near-infrared spectroscopy study. J Cereb Blood Flow Metab 37(12):3789–3802. https://doi.org/10.1177/0271678X17691783 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- 11.Nct (2017) “iRestore” Light Therapy Apparatus. https://clinicaltrials.gov/show/nct03331003. Accessed Oct 2018
- 12.Gupta AK, Mays RR, Dotzert MS, Versteeg SG, Shear NH, Piguet V (2018) Efficacy of non-surgical treatments for androgenetic alopecia: a systematic review and network meta-analysis. J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol. https://doi.org/10.1111/jdv.15081
- 15.Esmat SM, Hegazy RA, Gawdat HI, Abdel Hay RM, Allam RS, El Naggar R, Moneib H (2017) Low level light-minoxidil 5% combination versus either therapeutic modality alone in management of female patterned hair loss: a randomized controlled study. Lasers Surg Med 49(9):835–843. https://doi.org/10.1002/lsm.22684 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- 16.Faghihi G, Mozafarpoor S, Asilian A, Mokhtari F, Esfahani AA, Bafandeh B, Nouraei S, Nilforoushzadeh MA, Hosseini SM (2018) The effectiveness of adding low-level light therapy to minoxidil 5% solution in the treatment of patients with androgenetic alopecia. Indian J Dermatol Venereol Leprol 84(5):547–553. https://doi.org/10.4103/ijdvl.IJDVL_1156_16 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- 17.Leavitt M, Charles G, Heyman E, Michaels D (2009) HairMax LaserComb laser phototherapy device in the treatment of male androgenetic alopecia: a randomized, double-blind, sham device-controlled, multicentre trial. Clin Drug Investig 29(5):283–292. https://doi.org/10.2165/00044011-200929050-00001 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- 22.Mai-Yi Fan S, Cheng YP, Lee MY, Lin SJ, Chiu HY (2018) Efficacy and safety of a low-level light therapy for androgenetic alopecia: a 24-week, randomized, double-blind, self-comparison, sham device-controlled trial. Dermatol Surg 44(11):1411–1420. https://doi.org/10.1097/dss.0000000000001577 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- 23.Barikbin B, Khodamrdi Z, Kholoosi L, Akhgri MR, Haj Abbasi M, Hajabbasi M, Razzaghi Z, Akbarpour S (2017) Comparison of the effects of 665 nm low level diode laser hat versus and a combination of 665 nm and 808nm low level diode laser scanner of hair growth in androgenic alopecia. J Cosmet Laser Ther. https://doi.org/10.1080/14764172.2017.1326609
- 24.Jimenez JJ, Wikramanayake TC, Bergfeld W, Hordinsky M, Hickman JG, Hamblin MR, Schachner LA (2014) Efficacy and safety of a low-level laser device in the treatment of male and female pattern hair loss: a multicenter, randomized, sham device-controlled, double-blind study. Am J Clin Dermatol 15(2):115–127. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40257-013-0060-6 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- 26.de Freitas LF, Hamblin MR (2016) Proposed mechanisms of photobiomodulation or low-level light therapy. IEEE J Sel Top Quantum Electron 22(3). https://doi.org/10.1109/JSTQE.2016.2561201