Introduction Melasma is a common dermatological skin disease that can now be treated by fractional photothermolysis (fractional resurfacing). Past studies have shown that thermal spring water (TSW) spray can reduce local inflammatory symptoms after dermatological surgery, laser surgery or chemical peelings. The aim of this study was to evaluate the clinical efficacy and safety of spraying TSW post-fractional resurfacing treatment in patients with dermal melasma.
Methods Twenty patients with bilateral dermal melasma were included in this split-face comparative study. Patients were treated by fractional resurfacing laser and then TSW was sprayed generously unilaterally. For the next 48 h, patients were instructed to spray thermal water at least six times a day on one side. Patient’s self-assessment conducted 10 min and 2 days after TSW spraying (stinging, pain, skin dryness, swelling, and redness) and investigator’s 48-h post-treatment evaluation (purpura, skin dryness, erythema, swelling, scars, hyper- or hypopigmentation) were recorded for the treated and control sides using visual analogue scales.
Results Pain, dryness, and redness were significantly lower 10 min after spraying on the TSW-treated side in comparison with the untreated side, as assessed by the patients (P < 0.05). Two days after fractional resurfacing, dryness and redness were still improved on the TSW-treated side. The investigator’s evaluation revealed that erythema, the only perceivable sign following irradiation, was significantly reduced by TSW spraying (P < 0.01).
Conclusion This split-face comparative study conducted in patients with dermal melasma showed that spraying TSW after fractional laser resurfacing significantly reduced short-term adverse effects associated with the procedure.