Long-pulsed dye laser versus intense pulsed light for photodamaged skin: A randomized split-face trial with blinded response evaluation


  • The authors have no relevant personal financial interest in this article.



In a randomized controlled split-face trial to evaluate efficacy and adverse effects from rejuvenation with long-pulsed dye laser (LPDL) versus intense pulsed light (IPL).

Materials and Methods

Twenty female volunteers with Fitzpatrick skin types I–III, classes I–II rhytids, and symmetrical split-face photodamage were included in the study. Subjects received a series of three treatments at 3-week intervals with half-face LPDL (V-beam Perfecta, 595 nm, Candela Laser Corporation) and half-face IPL (Ellipse Flex, Danish Dermatologic Development); the interventions being randomly assigned to left and right sides. Primary end-points were telangiectasias, irregular pigmentation and preferred treatment. Secondary end-points were skin texture, rhytids, pain, and adverse effects. Efficacy was evaluated by patient self-assessments and by blinded clinical on-site and photographic evaluations at 1, 3, and 6 months postoperatively. Adverse effects were evaluated by blinded clinical on-site evaluations.


Telangiectasia improved from LPDL and IPL treatments with superior vessel clearance from LPDL treatments (postoperative side-to-side evaluations, patient self-assessments, P≤0.031, 3, 6 months). Irregular pigmentation and skin texture improved from both treatments with no significant side-to-side differences. No reduction was seen of rhytides on LPDL- or IPL-treated sides. Treatment-related pain scores were significantly higher after IPL (medians 7–8) than LPDL (4.75–5.5) treatments (P<0.001). Adverse effects included erythema, oedema, and transient hyperpigmentation. Patients preferred LPDL- to IPL treatments (P≤0.031).


This study was based on two specific laser and IPL equipments, which found LPDL rejuvenation advantageous to IPL rejuvenation due to superior vessel clearance and less pain. Lesers Surg. Med. 40:293–299, 2008. © 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc.