Photobiomodulation for the management of hair loss

Photodermatol Photoimmunol Photomed. 2021 Mar;37(2):91-98. doi: 10.1111/phpp.12649. Epub 2021 Jan 13.


Photobiomodulation, otherwise known as low-level laser (or light) therapy, is an emerging modality for the management of hair loss. Several randomized trials have demonstrated that it is safe and potentially effective on its own or in combination with standard therapies. These devices come in many forms including wearable caps or helmets that afford hands-free and discreet use. Models with light-emitting diodes (LEDs) are less expensive compared to laser-based devices and do not require laser safety considerations, thus facilitating ease of home use. Limitations include cost of the unit, risk of information bias, and lack of standardized protocols. Finally, as with any hair loss treatment, patients' expectations with regards to therapeutic outcomes must be managed.

Keywords: alopecia; hair growth; low-level laser; low-level light therapy; photobiomodulation.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Alopecia / radiotherapy*
  • Humans
  • Low-Level Light Therapy / instrumentation
  • Low-Level Light Therapy / methods*