Laser and Light-Based Treatment Modalities
for the Management of Hidradenitis Suppurativa
Laser and light-based treatment modalities have been used alone and in combination with other treatment modalities for the treatment of HS with varying rates of success. Most of the information in support or against their use has come from small clinical trials or case series. Thus, larger randomized controlled trials are needed to elucidate their role and determine optimal treatment settings. There is promising evidence for Nd:YAG, ablative CO2, diode, alexandrite laser, IPL, PDT, radiofrequency, and external beam radiation for HS, while microwave technology has not proven effective. In addition, fractionated CO2 can be used to help aid in wound healing and improve HS scars. Because there are no standardized HS outcome measures for comparison between trials, comparisons between treatment modalities is challenging. Similarly, there are no standardized treatment protocols using these devices, and settings vary between machines. Further studies to elucidate optimal outcome measures, formulate treatment protocols, and investigate the role of the treatments in pregnant/lactating women and in children are also needed. In the end, an individualized patient-centered multimodal approach using a combination of topical, medical, systemic, laser, light-based, and surgical options for the management of HS should be utilized.