Alopecia areata is a common disease of unknown etiology; it causes significant cosmetic and psycho-social distress for most of the people it affects. We report on an innovative form of treatment in two patients with typical alopecia areata on the capillitium.
We successfully treated two patients whose alopecia areata had worsened progressively for 3 and 14 weeks. The treatment involved the use of a 308 nm xenon chloride excimer laser (dosage 300-2,300 mJ/cm(2) per session).
After 11 and 12 sessions within a 9-week and 11-week period, the entire affected focus showed homogenous and thick regrowth. No relapse was observed during the follow-up period of 5 and 18 months.
The use of the excimer laser is an effective, elegant, and safe means of treatment and has good tolerability. Analogous to topical treatment of alopecia areata, the immunosuppressive mechanism of the excimer laser can be interpreted as an induction of T-cell apoptosis. This new means of treatment has yet to be discussed in medical literature. Further studies with greater numbers are needed to assess its potential more precisely and evaluate the excimer laser in treating alopecia areata.