Bleomycin Tattooing Is Promising Scar Treatment

For large scars and keloids in covered areas, it may be superior to standard cryotherapy

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 30 (HealthDay News) -- In the treatment of patients with large keloids and hypertrophic scars, bleomycin tattooing may produce better results than standard cryotherapy with intralesional triamcinolon injection, according to a study published in the August issue of Dermatologic Surgery.

Farahnaz Fatemi Naeini, M.D., and colleagues from Isfahan University of Medical Sciences in Isfahan, Iran, randomly assigned 45 patients with keloids or hypertrophic scars to receive four therapeutic sessions of either bleomycin tattooing or cryotherapy.

After three months, the researchers found that both treatments resulted in a similar therapeutic response (greater than 88 percent) in lesions smaller than 100 mm2. In larger lesions, however, they found that bleomycin tattooing produced a superior response compared to cryotherapy.

"The most common complication in the bleomycin group was hyperpigmentation (observed in 75 percent of patients), which was higher than in other reports," the authors write. "Given the findings of this study and a few others on the efficacy of bleomycin in treating keloids and hypertrophic scars�the authors recommend bleomycin tattooing as an appropriate mode of treatment for larger lesions in covered areas."

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