A Pilot Study of Treatment of Herpes Labialis With 1072 Nm Narrow Waveband Light

Clin Exp Dermatol. 2001 Mar;26(2):149-54. doi: 10.1046/j.1365-2230.2001.00783.x.


A randomized prospective double-blind study was performed to compare the efficacy of a single 5 min 1072 nm narrow waveband light application against topical aciclovir applied five times daily in the treatment of herpes labialis. Treatment was initiated within 36 h of the onset of symptoms and the end point was defined as the day that the crust was discarded leaving an uninterrupted underlying skin at the site of the cold sore. The results demonstrated that a single 5 min light treatment significantly reduced cold sore healing time by 4 days; 1072 nm light healed cold sores in 4.3 +/- 1.8 days (mean +/- SD) as compared with aciclovir applied five times daily, 8.5 +/- 3.0 days (P < 0.0001).

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Acyclovir / administration & dosage
  • Administration, Cutaneous
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Antiviral Agents / administration & dosage
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Drug Administration Schedule
  • Herpes Labialis / drug therapy
  • Herpes Labialis / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Phototherapy / methods*
  • Pilot Projects
  • Prospective Studies
  • Time Factors


  • Antiviral Agents
  • Acyclovir