Retrospective analysis of melasma treatment using a dual mode of low-fluence Q-switched and long-pulse Nd: YAG laser vs. low-fluence Q-switched Nd:YAG laser monotherapy

Chun Pil Choi, Seon Mi Yim, Soo-Hong Seo, Hyo Hyun Ahn, Young Chul Kye, Jae Eun Choi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Despite the effectiveness of low-fluence Q-switched Nd:YAG laser (QSNY) treatment in melasma, adverse events, including mottled hypopigmentation (MH) and rebound hyperpigmentation (RH) have been reported. Objective: To compare the effectiveness and safety of combination therapy using low-fluence QSNY and long-pulse Nd:YAG laser (LPNY) (Dual toning), with low-fluence QSNY monotherapy (QS toning), in Asian melasma patients. Materials and methods: Patients were treated for 10 sessions at 1-week intervals with QSNY (6 mm spot); 2.5-3.0 J/cm for QS toning (n = 177) or 2.1-2.5 J/cm for dual toning (n = 183). The dual toning group was immediately treated with LPNY (7 mm spot, 15-17 J/cm). The results were evaluated using the modified Melasma Area and Severity Index (mMASI) score and the physician's global assessment. Results: MH or RH were significantly lower (1.1% vs. 14.1%) and the treatment efficacy was improved (median decrease of mMASI, 3.6 vs. 3.0) in the dual toning group compared with the QS toning group. Periorbital melasma showed distinctively high rates of adverse events in the QS toning group (23.9% vs. 5.7%), which were significantly reduced in the dual toning group (2.9%). Conclusion: Dual toning could represent a safe and effective treatment for Asian melasma patients, as it is associated with minimal adverse events and improved treatment efficacy compared with QS toning monotherapy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2-8
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Cosmetic and Laser Therapy
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Jan 1



  • Long-pulse Nd:YAG laser
  • Melasma
  • Mottled hypopigmentation
  • Q-switched Nd:YAG laser
  • Rebound hyperpigmentation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Dermatology

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