Background. Due to its potential effects on skin microcirculation and collagen metabolism, the 585 nm flashlamp-pumped pulsed dye laser has been proposed for treating abnormal scars. Indeed, one of the main problems with keloidal scars is their disfiguring erythematous color.

Objective. To assess the efficacy of the 585 nm pulsed dye laser on the appearance of keloids.

Methods. Eleven patients with skin phototypes II–IV and keloids were treated with the 585 nm pulsed dye laser. After one to three treatment sessions, clinical assessments of the scars were performed in combination with remittance spectroscopy measurements of the redness and melanin pigmentation. A group of nine keloids covered by silicone gel sheeting served as controls. Data were compared statistically.

Results. During laser treatments, a discrete decrease in redness of the scars was clinically reported. However, this improvement was not confirmed by the objective spectrophotometric data. No side effects, especially hyperpigmentation, were disclosed. The keloids redness was not improved in the control group.

Conclusion. The 585 nm pulsed dye laser yields only minimal effects, if any, on the erythema of keloids. Similarly silicone gel sheeting does not modify the keloids redness.