A combination therapy consisting of niacinamide 4% plus gallic acid 1% and lauric acid 1% was an effective treatment option for acne vulgaris, according to study research published in Dermatologic Therapy.

The study included a total of 90 patients with acne (mean age, 21.81±3.05) from an outpatient dermatology clinic in Turkey. At time of study entry, patients had a mean disease duration of 41.5 ± 31.2 months. All patients had previously used only 1 type of topical agent for their disease.

Patients were randomly divided to either twice-daily benzoyl peroxide 5%, twice-daily benzoyl peroxide 5% plus erythromycin 3%, or twice-daily combination therapy consisting of niacinamide 4% plus gallic acid 1% and lauric acid 1%. The investigators used the global acne grading system (GAGS), the lesion counting (LC), and photographic standard to assess acne severity at weeks 0, 2, 4, and 8.

A statistically significant decrease in baseline GAGS scores was observed from week 0 to week 8 for each group (P =.000). No significant difference was found between the 3 treatment groups in terms of the reduction in GAGS scores from baseline to week 8 (P =.573). The LC scores also decreased from baseline to week 8 for each group (P <.001). Patients were considered to have severe acne by baseline LC but experienced a reduction to moderate acne grade at the end of treatment.


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Limitations of this study included its retrospective nature, single-center design, and the relatively small sample size.

The researchers concluded that the combination therapy used in this study could “be used as an alternative topical treatment for acne vulgaris to prevent resistance against topical antibiotics and the side effects of some other treatments.”

Reference

Kozan A, Guner RY, Akyol M. A retrospective assessment and comparison of the effectiveness of benzoyl peroxide; the combination of topical niacinamide, gallic acid, and lauric acid; and the combination of benzoyl peroxide and erythromycin in acne vulgaris [published online May 10, 2020]. Dermatol Ther. doi: 10.1111/dth.13534