[Fractional photothermolysis: a new option for treating melasma?]

Hautarzt. 2008 Feb;59(2):92-100. doi: 10.1007/s00105-007-1458-y.
[Article in German]


Melasma or chloasma is a common acquired hypermelanosis of the face and neck that is notoriously difficult to treat. Laser treatment has been employed in patients who do not respond to conventional topical agents but has failed to achieve an acceptable compromise between efficacy and side effects. Fractional photothermolysis (FP) combines the efficacy of ablative and the tolerability of non-ablative laser treatment in some skin conditions. There are few studies on using FP in melasma and its value cannot be estimated presently. Review of the literature and the authors' own experience show a definite potential which should be further investigated in systematic studies, but we cannot at this point subscribe to the euphoria expressed in some publications.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Dose Fractionation, Radiation
  • Facial Dermatoses / radiotherapy*
  • Humans
  • Low-Level Light Therapy / methods*
  • Low-Level Light Therapy / trends*
  • Melanosis / radiotherapy*