Volume 16 | Issue 4
Combination of In-Office Chemical Peels With a Topical Comprehensive Pigmentation Control Product in Skin of Color Subjects With Facial Hyperpigmentation
Jeanine Downie MD, a Katie Schneider BS, b Lisa Goberdhan BA, b Elizabeth T. Makino BS CCRA MBA, b and Rahul C. Mehta PhD b|
Dyschromia is one of the primary complaints for patients with skin of color. Treatments need to achieve a balance between tolerability and efficacy to address existing hyperpigmentation without causing additional damage that could trigger post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH). An open-label, single-center study was conducted to assess the efficacy of a novel comprehensive pigmentation control serum (LYT2) combined with a series of three very superficial chemical peels (VP) in skin of color subjects. Seventeen female and male subjects aged 36 to 69 years with Fitzpatrick Skin Types III-VI and moderate to severe facial hyperpigmentation were enrolled in the 12-week clinical study. Subjects identified as Asian, Hispanic, African American, or Caucasian ethnicities. Subjects received a series of 3 VP treatments every 4 weeks. LYT2 was applied twice-daily in between VP treatments. Investigator assessments for overall hyperpigmentation, overall photodamage, and skin tone unevenness, as well as standardized digital photography and subject self-assessment questionnaires were conducted at all visits (baseline and weeks 4, 8, and 12). In vivo reflectance confocal microscopy (RCM) of a target lesion was conducted (in a subset of subjects) at baseline and week 12. Fourteen subjects completed the study. The treatment regimen provided statistically significant improvements in all efficacy parameters at weeks 8 and 12 (all P less than equal to 0.03, student’s t-test). Standardized digital photography and RCM images support the improvements in overall hyperpigmentation observed by the investigator. At the end of treatment, the regimen was highly rated by subjects with 100% of subjects (strongly agree/agree) that the combination “decreased the appearance of uneven skin tone and discolorations” and “reduced the appearance of sun damage.” In addition to this clinical study, independent case studies with this combination treatment regimen at a separate study site were also conducted with results that corroborate the formal clinical study findings. The comprehensive results from these studies suggest that the combination of a comprehensive pigmentation control serum with a series of 3 very superficial chemical peels may provide an effective treatment approach for hyperpigmentation in skin of color patients.
J Drugs Dermatol. 2017;16(4):301-306.
Lauren Meshkov Bonati MD,a Gorana Kuka Epstein MD,b and Tamara Lazic Strugar MDa|
INTRODUCTION: Microneedling procedures are growing in popularity for a wide variety of skin conditions. This paper comprehensively reviews the medical literature regarding skin needling efficacy and safety in all skin types and in multiple dermatologic conditions.
METHODS: A PubMed literature search was conducted in all languages without restriction and bibliographies of relevant articles reviewed. Search terms included: “microneedling,” “percutaneous collagen induction,” “needling,” “skin needling,” and “dermaroller.”
RESULTS: Microneedling is most commonly used for acne scars and cosmetic rejuvenation, however, treatment benefit has also been seen in varicella scars, burn scars, keloids, acne, alopecia, and periorbital melanosis, and has improved flap and graft survival, and enhanced transdermal delivery of topical products. Side effects were mild and self-limited, with few reports of post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, and isolated reports of tram tracking, facial allergic granuloma, and systemic hypersensitivity.
DISCUSS: Microneedling represents a safe, cost-effective, and efficacious treatment option for a variety of dermatologic conditions in all skin types. More double-blinded, randomized, controlled trials are required to make more definitive conclusions.
J Drugs Dermatol. 2017;16(4):308-314.
A Retrospective Review of Treatment Results for Patients With Central Centrifugal Cicatrical Alopecia
Ariana Eginli BA, Emily Dothard MD, Courtney W. Bagayoko MD, Karen Huang MS, Alyssa Daniel MD, and Amy J. McMichael MD|
INTRODUCTION: Central centrifugal cicatricial alopecia (CCCA) is a form of scarring alopecia primarily affecting women of African descent on the crown of the scalp. Limited data exists regarding evidence-based treatment for CCCA.
OBJECTIVE: To examine photos of subjects with CCCA before and after treatment in order to evaluate results of treatment and compare results of different treatment regimens.
METHODS: Photographs of 15 subjects with CCCA before and after treatment were evaluated by two blinded investigators who assigned disease severity scores to photographs based on a published scale: Central Scalp Alopecia Photographic Scale in African American Women.
RESULTS: Median change in severity score (post-treatment severity score – pre-treatment severity score) was 0.5 (P = 0.58) for all 15 subjects receiving a series of 7 to 8 intralesional steroid injections along with topical steroids (Class I/II) +/- minoxidil and +/- anti-dandruff shampoo, indicating worsening of disease after treatment. Subjects receiving minoxidil versus those who did not (0.25 vs 0.5; P = 0.38) and subjects receiving anti-dandruff shampoo versus those who did not (0.0 vs 0.5; P = 0.42) demonstrated no statistically significant difference in pre- and post-treatment severity scores. Of 15 subjects, 5/15 (33.3%) had decreased severity scores, 8/15 (53.3%) had increased severity scores, and 2/15 (13.3%) had no change in severity scores.
CONCLUSIONS: Although no statistically significant difference was found in pre- versus post-treatment disease severity, this may indicate intralesional steroid injections and topical steroids +/- minoxidil and +/- anti-dandruff shampoo halt disease progression.
J Drugs Dermatol. 2017;16(4):317-320.
Improvement of Atrophic Acne Scars in Skin of Color Using Topical Synthetic Epidermal Growth Factor (EGF) Serum: A Pilot Study
Marie Alexia Stoddard BS,a Jennifer Herrmann MD,b,c,d Lauren Moy MD,e and Ronald Moy MDb,f|
BACKGROUND: Atrophic scarring in skin of color is a common, permanent, and distressing result of uncontrolled acne vulgaris. Ablative lasers and chemical peels are frequently used to improve the appearance of atrophic scars, primarily through the stimulation of collagen and elastin; however, these treatment modalities are associated with risks, such as dyspigmentation and hypertrophic scarring, especially in patients with darker skin.
OBJECTIVE: We evaluated the efficacy of topically applied synthetic epidermal growth factor (EGF) serum in reducing the appearance of atrophic acne scars in skin of color.
METHODS: A single-center clinical trial was performed on twelve healthy men and women (average age 32.5) with Fitzpatrick Type IV-V skin and evidence of facial grade II-IV atrophic acne scars. Subjects applied topical EGF serum to the full-face twice daily for 12 weeks. Scar improvement was investigated at each visit using an Investigator Global Assessment (IGA), a Goodman grade, clinical photography, and patient self-assessment.
RESULTS: Eleven subjects completed the trial. Compared to baseline, there was an improvement in mean IGA score from 3.36 (SEM = 0.15) to 2.18 (SEM = 0.33). Mean Goodman grade was reduced from 2.73 (SEM = 0.19) to 2.55 (SEM = 0.21). Of the eleven pairs of before and after photographs, nine were correctly chosen as the post-treatment image by a blind investigator. On self-assessment, 81% reported a “good” to “excellent” improvement in their scars compared to baseline (P = 0.004).
CONCLUSION: Topical EGF may improve the appearance of atrophic acne scars in skin of color. Additional, larger studies should be conducted to better characterize improvement.
J Drugs Dermatol. 2017;16(4):322-326.
Mary L. Stevenson MD,a Julie K. Karen MD,a,b and Elizabeth K. Hale MDa,b|
Photodynamic therapy (PDT) uses a topical photosensitizing agent which is activated by a light source to cause destruction of specific cells. Commonly used for the treatment of actinic keratoses and photodamage, PDT can also be used for other conditions including acne and sebaceous hyperplasia. Here we report our experience with two treatment protocols. The first protocol utilizes laser assisted delivery of topical 5-aminolevulinic acid for enhanced efficacy of blue light photodynamic therapy in the treatment of actinic keratoses and photodamage. The second protocol utilizes red light photodynamic therapy followed by pulsed dye laser to effectively target sebaceous glands in patients with extensive sebaceous hyperplasia.
J Drugs Dermatol. 2017;16(4):329-331.
The Current State of Dermatologists’ Familiarity and Perspectives of Biosimilars for the Treatment of Psoriasis: A Global Cross-Sectional Survey
Iviensan F. Manalo MD,a Kathleen E. Gilbert MD,b and Jashin J. Wu MDc|
BACKGROUND: Biologic patent expiration, accelerated approval pathways, and business interests of third party payers and the biopharmaceutical industry are driving the development of biosimilars to treat immune-mediated disorders like psoriasis. No studies have investigated dermatologists’ familiarity and perspectives of biosimilars.
OBJECTIVES: To assess: (1) dermatologists’ familiarity with biosimilars and interchangeability and (2) their perspectives toward biosimilar properties, including interchangeability, indication extrapolation, and immunogenicity risk.
METHODS: For this prospective survey study, we distributed electronic and paper questionnaires to dermatologists from selected societies and attendees at the 73rd annual American Academy of Dermatology meeting between March 20, 2015 and May 30, 2015. Primary outcome was dermatologists’ familiarity with biosimilars. Secondary aims included dermatologists’ confidence in biosimilar efficacy and safety, familiarity concerning the concept of interchangeability and perspectives regarding indication extrapolation, interchangeability, and immunogenicity risk.
RESULTS: Of the 116 total dermatologists who completed the questionnaire, 73 (62.9%) were slightly to very unfamiliar with biosimilars. On a 5-point Likert scale, dermatologists were somewhat to very concerned with the practice of interchangeability (3.4±1.1) and slightly uncomfortable to fairly comfortable in prescribing biosimilars for an extrapolated indication (3.3±1.0).
CONCLSUIONS: Our survey identified that the majority of dermatologists were unfamiliar with biosimilars. Dermatologists were consistently concerned regarding safety issues surrounding the practice of interchangeability without provider knowledge.
J Drugs Dermatol. 2017;16(4):336-343.
Saba Zabetian MD, Gordon Jacobson MS, Henry W. Lim MD, Melody J. Eide MD, and Richard H. Huggins MD|
BACKGROUND: No study has examined the impact of vitiligo support group membership on vitiligo patient quality of life (QoL).
OBJECTIVE: We sought to examine the QoL impact of vitiligo support groups by comparing QoL and associated patient characteristics between vitiligo patients who are and are not members of a vitiligo support group.
METHODS: Members of a Henry Ford Hospital-sponsored, Southeast Michigan Vitiligo Support Group were compared to non-member vitiligo patients recruited from a previous study cohort.17 Eligible patients were asked to complete the Dermatology Life Quality Index (DLQI) and a study-specific questionnaire designed to collect relevant patient characteristics.
RESULTS: The mean DLQI scores for the support group members and non-members were similar (7.1 ± 5.4 and 6.0 ± 6.5, respectively; P-value 0.2), despite the support group members reporting more severe overall disease and increased disease severity in exposed portions of the body. The African-American: Caucasian ratio and the prevalence of unemployment were both significantly higher among the support group participants. Limitations: Small sample size may have limited the study’s ability to demonstrate the differences between the support group participants and the controls.
CONCLUSIONS: The similar QoL despite an increased prevalence of poorer QoL indicators among the support group participants suggests a protective effect of support group membership.
J Drugs Dermatol. 2017;16(4):344-350.
Mid-Face Volumization With Hyaluronic Acid: Injection Technique and Safety Aspects from a Controlled, Randomized, Double-Blind Clinical Study
Welf Prager MD,a Karla Agsten MD,b Maria Kravtsov MSc,c and Prof. Martina Kerscher MDd|
BACKGROUND: Injection of hyaluronic acid (HA) volumizing fillers in the malar area is intended for rejuvenation of the mid-face. The choice of products, depth, and technique of injection depends on the desired level of volume enhancement and practitioners’ preferences.
OBJECTIVE: To describe a volumizing injection technique in the scope of a controlled, randomized, double-blind, single-center, split-face clinical study. Materials & Methods: A total of 45 subjects with bilateral symmetrical moderate to severe volume loss in the malar area received a single 2 mL injection of CPM®-26 (Cohesive Polydensified Matrix®) on one side and VYC®-20 (VYCROSS®) on the contralateral side of the face. The same injection technique was applied for both sides of the face. Use of anesthetics, overcorrection, and touch-ups were not permitted. The investigator completed a product satisfaction questionnaire. Adverse events (AE) and injection-site reactions (ISRs) were reported during the study.
RESULTS: The products were placed at the epiperiosteal depth in 88.9% (n=40), at the subdermal depth in 8.9% (n=4) and at both levels in 2.2% (n=1) of subjects. Fanning technique using cannulae was applied in most cases (97.8%, n=44). Results of the investigator satisfaction questionnaire allowed to characterize CPM-26 in comparison to other volumizing gels. Both study products were generally well tolerated. Local reactions were transient and of mild to moderate intensity, with the most frequent ones being redness, pain, and swelling.
CONCLUSION: Adequate injection technique in volumizing treatments is essential to create a natural aesthetic rejuvenation while respecting the safety aspect of the procedures. A 22G blunt cannula used with CPM-26 was preferred due to an easier and a more homogeneous distribution of the product. The investigator also appreciated CPM-26 for its ease of injection, positioning, lifting, and volumizing capacity.
J Drugs Dermatol. 2017;16(4):351-357.
Ellinor R. Quay MD,a Yunyoung C. Chang MD,a and Emmy Graber MD MBAb|
As the market for South Korean skin care products grows in the U.S. and worldwide, consumers will increasingly seek advice from dermatologists regarding their efficacy. In this paper, the evidence behind the anti-aging and skin whitening activity of ingredients in the most popular South Korean skin care products was reviewed and critically evaluated. Industry profit data from Euromonitor was obtained to identify the top cosmeceutical brands by retail value in South Korea. The top selling products and their ingredients were then identified from individual brand websites. A comprehensive literature search was conducted using Pubmed to identify and grade the anti-aging and whitening efficacy for nine popular ingredients: licorice, niacinamide, beta-glucan, snail mucus, ginkgo biloba, ginseng, green tea, pomegranate, and soy. Of the various ingredients reviewed, niacinamide, green tea, licorice, and soy have the most published data for anti-aging and whitening activity. Although the literature shows modest results, small sample sizes limit interpretation. High-level evidence to support the use of South Korean skin care products in anti-aging and skin whitening is lacking.
J Drugs Dermatol. 2017;16(4):358-364.
Clinical Assessment of Immediate and Long-Term Effects of a Two-Step Topical Hyaluronic Acid Lip Treatment
Elizabeth T. Makino BS CCRA MBA,a Priscilla Tan BA,a Kun Qian MD,b Michael Babcock MD FAAD,b and Rahul C. Mehta PhDa|
Key features of lip aging include loss of volume, color, and definition as well as increases in lines/wrinkles and uneven skin texture. A single-center, open-label clinical study was conducted to assess the efficacy and tolerability of a novel, topical two-step lip treatment (HA5 LS) in female subjects presenting with mild to moderate lip dryness and mild to severe lip condition. Subjects were instructed to apply HA5 LS at least three times a day to ensure coverage 8 hours a day for four weeks. Clinical assessments for efficacy and tolerability were conducted at baseline, baseline post-application, week 2, and week 4. Standardized digital photography, subject self-assessment questionnaires, and instrumentation measurements for skin hydration (corneometer) and lip plumpness (digital caliper) were also conducted. Thirty-six female subjects aged 22-40 years enrolled in the study. HA5 LS provided instant and long term effects, achieving significant improvements in all clinical grading parameters including lip texture, color, definition/contour, scaling, cupping, lines/wrinkles, lip plumpness, and overall lip condition from baseline post-application to week 4 (all P less than equal to .001; Wilcoxon signed-rank test). Instrumentation measurements for hydration and digital caliper at weeks 2 and 4 were also significant (all P less than equal to .032; paired t-test). HA5 LS was also well-tolerated and highly-rated by subjects throughout the study duration. Results from this study suggest that HA5 LS addresses the key features of lip aging, providing both instant and long-term benefits.
J Drugs Dermatol. 2017;16(4):366-371.
Jashin J. Wu MD,a Kathleen E. Gilbert MD,b Michael Batech DrPH,c Iviensan F. Manalo MD,d William J. Towner MD,c,e Rui André Saraiva Raposo PhD,f,g Douglas F. Nixon MD,f,g and Wilson Liao MDh|
BACKGROUND: HIV-associated psoriasis is well-documented. Genetic, cellular, and cytokine profiles have been used as evidence to suggest psoriasis activates antiviral pathways. There has been a lack of epidemiologic evidence investigating whether psoriasis patients have lower HIV viral counts compared to non-psoriasis patients.
OBJECTIVE: Compare the viral load set point of HIV positive patients with and without psoriasis.
METHODS: A retrospective matched cohort study of HIV positive patients with and without psoriasis using the Kaiser Permanente Southern California Health Plan database.
RESULTS: We identified 101 HIV-positive psoriasis cases; 19 met inclusion criteria and were matched with 3-5 control patients; 94 total patients were analyzed. The mean age was 41.4 (12.07) years and 83% were male. Overall, the median log of the viral load of cases was slightly higher than controls (4.3 vs 4.2; P less than 0.01).
CONCLUSIONS: The serum viral load set point of patients with HIV and psoriasis was slightly higher than the viral load set point of HIV patients without psoriasis.
J Drugs Dermatol. 2017;16(4):372-377.
The Mechanisms and Potential Impact of Stem Cell Activation in Skin Rejuvenation: An Evidence-Based Analysis
Hema Sundaram MD|
Stem cells can propagate indefinitely in an undifferentiated state; or, with appropriate signals, differentiate into various types of mature cells. Strong interest in stem cell therapies for degenerative diseases has extended to skin aging, itself a degenerative process. This article reviews mechanisms of skin aging, and enables an evidence-based approach to topical skin rejuvenation - specifically, to formulations labeled as stem cell products.
J Drugs Dermatol. 2017;16(4):378-384.
Euphemia W. Mu MDa and Steven S. Greenbaum MDb|
The lower cutaneous lip is a highly visible and functionally sensitive unit, and numerous factors must be considered when deciding on the optimal repair for defects in this area. The transposition flap represents an excellent option in the reconstruction of larger lower cutaneous lip defects. We describe the use of random pattern transposition flaps for the repair of lower lateral cutaneous lip defects.
J Drugs Dermatol. 2017;16(4):385-387.
A Difference in Cutaneous Pigmentary Response to LED Versus Halogen Incandescent Visible Light: A Case Report from a Single Center, Investigational Clinical Trial Determining a Minimal Pigmentary Visible Light Dose
Teo Soleymani MD,a Nicholas A. Soter MD,a Lorcan M. Folan PhD,b Nada Elbuluk MD MSc,a Uchenna R. Okereke MD,a and David E. Cohen MD MPHa|
BACKGROUND: While most of the attention regarding skin pigmentation has focused on the effects on ultraviolet radiation, the cutaneous effects of visible light (400 to 700nm) are rarely reported. In this report, we describe a case of painful erythema and induration that resulted from direct irradiation of UV-naïve skin with visible LED light in a patient with Fitzpatrick type II skin.
METHODS AND RESULTS: A 24-year-old healthy woman with Fitzpatrick type II skin presented to our department to participate in a clinical study. As part of the study, the subject underwent visible light irradiation with an LED and halogen incandescent visible light source. After 5 minutes of exposure, the patient complained of appreciable pain at the LED exposed site. Evaluation demonstrated erythema and mild induration. There were no subjective or objective findings at the halogen incandescent irradiated site, which received equivalent fluence (0.55 Watts / cm2). The study was halted as the subject was unable to tolerate the full duration of visible light irradiation.
CONCLUSION: This case illustrates the importance of recognizing the effects of visible light on skin. While the vast majority of investigational research has focused on ultraviolet light, the effects of visible light have been largely overlooked and must be taken into consideration, in all Fitzpatrick skin types.
J Drugs Dermatol. 2017;16(4):388-392.