Anais Brasileiros de Dermatologia
On-line version ISSN 1806-4841
COSTA, Adilson; ALCHORNE, Maurício Mota Avelar; MICHALANY, Nilceo Schwery and LIMA, Hermênio Cavalcante. Acne vulgaris: a pilot study to assess an oral treatment with essential fatty acids using clinical, digital, and pathological analyses. An. Bras. Dermatol. [online]. 2007, vol.82, n.2, pp. 129-134. ISSN 1806-4841. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0365-05962007000200003.
BACKGROUND: The relation among acne vulgaris, foods and treatment with essential fatty acids is unknown; however essential fatty acids are important in the pathophysiology of acne vulgaris. OBJECTIVES: To verify the clinical response of acne vulgaris with essential fatty acids and to establish the best methods to assess therapy. METHODS: Thirty-one volunteers took part in the study; in that, 16 (51.6%) received a product rich in essential fatty acids and 15 (48.4%) received a placebo. Clinical examination, volunteer's self-evaluation (subjective score), digital image and pathological evaluation were performed before and after treatment. RESULTS: There was no difference in the subjective score (p=0.419) and digital analysis (p=0.2187) between the product and placebo groups; there was a suggestive sign of improvement based on the pathological examination (p=0.087) but the chi-squared test showed no significance (¯2= 4.878); there was no statistical correlation between digital analysis and subjective score (p=0.127), between the subjective score and pathological examination (p=0.438). However, pathological and digital analyses showed correlation (p=0.012). CONCLUSIONS: 1) further studies with larger samples should be used to evaluate the clinical benefit; 2) self-evaluation and digital analysis were not sufficient to indicate the best therapeutic standard - product or placebo - for acne vulgaris; 3) the correlation between digital and pathological analyses seems to be the best form to assess quality of this therapy; 4) pathological examination seems to be the most sensitive method to evaluate this therapeutic regimen.
Keywords : Acne vulgaris; Fatty acids; essential; Linoleic acid.