Introduction: Scarring is an unfortunate clinical outcome of acne. Current treatment options for atrophic acne scars are dominated by non-pharmacological, invasive procedures which may not be suitable or affordable to all patients. This phase II, single-center, open-label, exploratory study assessed the efficacy, safety and subject-reported outcomes of adapalene 0.3% gel in the treatment of atrophic acne scars.
Methods: The study included subjects aged 18-50 years with past history of acne and moderate to severe facial atrophic acne scars. Subjects received adapalene 0.3% gel once daily for the first 4 weeks and twice daily for the following 20 weeks. Assessments were performed at baseline, day 10 and weeks 4, 8, 16 and 24, and at post-treatment follow-ups (weeks 36 and 48-72).
Results: At week 24, investigator and subject assessments reported improvement in skin texture/atrophic scars in 50% and > 80% of subjects, respectively. Subjects were satisfied with the treatment and reported improvements in quality of life.
Conclusion: Daily use of adapalene 0.3% gel for the treatment of atrophic acne scars showed promising clinical efficacy, a favorable tolerability profile, and improvement in quality of life.
Funding: Nestlé Skin Health-Galderma R&D.
Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier NCT01213199.
Keywords: Acne; Adapalene; Atrophic scars; Molecular markers; Scarring; Skin texture; Subject-reported outcome; Topical retinoids.