Combination of Intense Pulse Light and Topical Eflornithine Therapy versus Intense Pulse Light Therapy alone in the Treatment of Idiopathic Facial Hirsutism: A Randomized Controlled Trial

J Pak Med Assoc. 2019 Jul;69(7):930-933.


Objective: To compare the efficacy of combination of Intense Pulse Light and topical eflornithine therapy versus Intense Pulse Light therapy alone in the treatment of idiopathic facial hirsutism.

Methodology: A total of 78 patients were included in the study, and were divided into two groups, having 39 patients each. Patients in group A were subjected to combined treatment i.e., topical eflornithine to be applied twice a day and IPL session to be received by patients once a month. Patients in group B were subjected to receive IPL monthly sessions alone. Treatment was continued for 6 months in both groups. After completion of treatment, average number of terminal hair and percentage hair reduction were calculated to see the efficacy.

Results: Out of 78 patients, 39 patients were included in group A, and similar number of patients were included in group B. The age of patients ranged from 22-42 years with mean age of 29.59±5.29. Maximum number of patients were in their third decade of life. Mean age in group A was 29.23±5.44, while in group B it was 29.95±5.19. Efficacy in group A was 39(100%) with mean percentage hair reduction of 90.44%, while efficacy in group B was 19 (48.7%) with mean percentage hair reduction of 59.23%, with statistically significant p-value of 0.00.

Conclusions: The combination of intense pulse light and topical eflornithine therapy is more efficacious than intense pulse light therapy alone in the treatment of idiopathic facial hirsutism.

Keywords: Idiopathic facial hirsutism, terminal hair, average number of terminal hair, percentage hair reduction.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Topical
  • Adult
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Eflornithine / therapeutic use*
  • Face
  • Female
  • Hirsutism / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Intense Pulsed Light Therapy / methods*
  • Ornithine Decarboxylase Inhibitors / therapeutic use*
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Young Adult


  • Ornithine Decarboxylase Inhibitors
  • Eflornithine