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 ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2003  |  Volume : 69  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 92--94

Efficacy of beta-carotene topical application in melasma - An open clinical trial


Dept. of Dermatology & STD, Dr RML Hospital, New Delhi - 110 001, India

Correspondence Address:
H K Kar
Dept. of Dermatology & STD, Dr RML Hospital, New Delhi - 110 001
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


PMID: 17642844

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Beta-carotene, a structural analogue of vitamin A, works as an agonist of this vitamin, by reversibly sticking the chemical mechanism of melanogenesis by saturating the nuclear receptors of melanocytes and /or binding protein. To study the safety and efficacy of Beta-carotene lotion on topical application in melasma, clinically diagnosed 31 adults (26Fand 5M) with melasma were included in this trial. All of them applied Beta-carotene lotion daily, morning and evening to the affected areas. Twenty six of them, completed regular 8 weeks treatment. Nine of them continued same treatment for 16 more weeks. All cases were evaluated clinically using melasma intensity (MPI) index (Grade I, II, III) and size of the lesion. Clinical photograph was taken for each case at 0 week, 8th week and 24th week. Initial 8 weeks treatment revealed that the single case with grade-I pigmentation included in this study recovered completely. Two out of 13 cases with grade-II pigmentation, showed no change, in 10 cases, pigmentation became lighter to grade-I (76.9%) and one case recovered completely. Out of 12 grade-III cases, one did not show any change, 10(83.3%) converted to grade-II and one to grade-I. At the end of 24 weeks, all the nine cases (2 grade-II and 7 grade-III) showed further clearing of the pigmentation to the next lower grade. Side effects like mild erythemo and local irritation were observed in two cases each, who were advised to discontinue treatment as per the protocol. In control group, out of 12 (two with grade -II, six in grade - II, and four in grade-III) cases 11 showed no improvement, only one case with grade-II melasma revealed reduction of pigmentation to grade-I. One case developed local irritation. In conclusion, topical application of Beta-carotene lotion appears to be an effective and safe for melasma. Longer duration of application is associated with better result.






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