Treating Melasma with Azelaic acid?
Azelaic acid works to improve melasma in two ways. First, it encourages cell turnover to exfoliate the skin and promote new, healthy skin growth. Second, azelaic acid also has antioxidant properties that help remove free radicals that can contribute to dull skin for a naturally brighter complexion. This ingredient is generally applied in a cream formulation at a strength of about 20%.
Azelaic acid (AzA) may offer optimal benefit when combined with a topical corticosteroid. In a prospective, single-blinded, right/left comparison study, 40 Indian patients with melasma were instructed to apply AzA cream 20% to one half of the face for 24 weeks and to apply clobetasol 0.05% for eight weeks followed by AzA cream 20% for the next 16 weeks. Sequential therapy was associated with more significant improvement than monotherap