Low level laser therapy
There is scientific literature since 2003 (Satino et al.) which describes the good therapeutic response of low-power lasers in patients with androgenetic alopecia.
A new paper (Jimenez et al.) was published during the year 2014 which demonstrates the usefulness of including this type of technology within the therapeutic set for the treatment of female and male androgenetic alopecia.
Several hypotheses deal with a stimulation of the epidermal stem cells in the hair follicle and the change to follicles in the growth phase.
The different studies have focused on determining whether treatment with a low power laser increases the density of a terminal hair in men and women with hair loss. There has been an overall improvement in the condition of hair loss, its thickness and appearance compared to subjects treated with placebos.
Therefore, unlikely the past, today there are numerous scientific studies that support the effectiveness of this technique, since today patients who undergoes the treatment are observed with the Trichoscan – program for the digital measurement of growth and hair loss and how hair density has increased – once they finished the treatment -.
Currently, it is used to intensify the effect of other classic treatments for alopecia.
What are they?
It is a low intensity laser light that has positive effects on hair growth. No major side effects have been described, and it is a painless treatment.
How is it apply?
The effects of low intensity phototherapy or laser therapy are photochemical, not photothermal. Photons penetrate the dermis and are absorbed by the mitochondria (large organelle whose main function is to perform cellular aerobic respiration).
This photon energy is able to modulate the production of toxic reactive oxygen species in the follicle and induce transcription factors, part of it is converted to chemical energy in the form of adenosine triphosphate (ATP). This makes it possible to change the permeability of the cell membrane and to produce physiological changes that favor the growth of the hair causing the follicles to re-enter the growth phase or anagen phase and prolong the duration of the growth phase.
How is it apply?
There are two ways to apply phototherapy:
- By wearing a helmet which is usually applied at the dermatological center.
- With a special comb that the patient can take home.
Depending on the patient, one to three sessions per week will be taken. However, it is appropriate that this treatment is carried out for about 4 months.
Is it safe?
No Severe adverse effects were found in any studies.
In some cases it has been observed that:
- It can dry the skin.
- It can produce itchiness.
- It can Irritate the scalp.
None of these local discomforts caused the patient stop using the device.
However, there are cases in which the use of low-power lasers is not advised. These cases are:
- People with a history of photosensitive diseases, such as lupus erythematosus.
- People taking some photosensitive medication.
- People intolerant to the sun or with injuries because of it.
- People with extensive surgeries on the scalp, such as those derived from an accident.
- People with complete alopecia.
CapMedica specialist physicians believe that the most effective for greater success is to combine phototherapy with low-power lasers with other treatments.
Additionally, it is a good alternative for those patients who want to stop their hair fall but do not want to take oral treatments that may be counterproductive with other medication they must be taken.