Background: Finding an effective treatment for acne that is well tolerated by the patients is a challenge. One study has suggested the efficacy of tea tree oil in treatment of the acne vulgaris.
Aim: To determine the efficacy of tea tree oil in mild to moderate acne vulgaris.
Methods: This was a randomized double-blind clinical trial performed in 60 patients with mild to moderate acne vulgaris. They were randomly divided into two groups and were treated with tea tree oil gel (n=30) or placebo (n=30). They were followed every 15 days for a period of 45 days. Response to treatment was evaluated by the total acne lesions counting (TLC) and acne severity index (ASI). The data was analyzed statistically using t-test and by SPSS program.
Results: There were no significant differences regarding demographic characteristics between the two groups. There was a significant difference between tea tree oil gel and placebo in the improvement of the TLC and also regarding improvement of the ASI. In terms of TLC and ASI, tea tree oil gel was 3.55 times and 5.75 times more effective than placebo respectively. Side-effects with both groups were relatively similar and tolerable.
Conclusion: Topical 5% tea tree oil is an effective treatment for mild to moderate acne vulgaris.