Clinical Efficacy of Self-applied Blue Light Therapy for Mild-to-Moderate Facial Acne

J Clin Aesthet Dermatol. 2009 Mar;2(3):44-50.


This study was an evaluation of the performance of self-applied, blue light, light-emitting diode therapy in the treatment of mild-to-moderate inflammatory acne on the face, concerning: 1) time to improvement and/or resolution of the number of blemishes and lesions on the face; 2) quality of skin condition; 3) occurrence and count of the number of new blemishes and lesions; and 4) ease of product use; patient comfort, wellbeing, and satisfaction during the treatment period; and safety of treatment. Subjects (N=21) were included according to the inclusion/exclusion criteria and after they had given informed consent. The blue light treatment was conducted over an eight-week period. For study data management and analysis, SPSS 16.0 statistical software was used. Data management and analysis was performed independently using, where appropriate, ANOVA, student t-test, and Mann-Whitney test for N=20. Tests were carried out at the five-percent significance level. The confidence interval was 95 percent. Twenty-one subjects concluded the study (18/21 were female and 3/21 were male). Upon the first outbreak of acne, subjects had a mean age of 15 years (range 8-28 years), and 19 subjects had mild-to-moderate acne for a mean duration of 13.1 years. During the study period with self-applied blue light treatment, the total number of comedones on the face had significantly reduced for the assessment at Day 7 (p<0.019) and at Day 28 (p<0.001). The total number of open comedones (blackheads) on the face during the treatment period was reduced significantly (p<0.02) for assessment at treatment Day 7 (p<0.005) and for the assessment at Day 28. The total number of closed comedones (whiteheads) on the face during the treatment period, was reduced significantly (p<0.007) for the assessment at Day 28. The total number of papules during treatment had reduced significantly for assessment at Day 7 (p<0.048) and Day 28 (p<0.005). The total number of pustules during treatment had reduced, but this difference was not statistically significant. This was similar for nodules present. Subjects expressed confidence in using the self-applied blue light without the supervision of a doctor. Regarding previous treatments, subjects expressed dissatisfaction and considered self-applied blue light treatment to be better for their condition. Self-applied blue light treatment was reported to be easy and safe to use.