Background Scars, including hypertrophic and keloidal-type scars, may occur after burns, trauma, or surgery. Despite several treatment options available for scars, few effective, noninvasive modalities exist. Recently, a few small clinical studies revealed the possible benefit of red and infrared (IR) low-level light therapy (LLLT) in scar treatment. One of the important features of scars is proliferation of dermal fibroblasts, but in vitro data regarding the effects of light-emitting diode (LED)-generated IR light on human skin fibroblasts is lacking. Objective To evaluate the effect of IR LLLT generated using LEDs on fibroblast proliferation and viability in vitro. Methods and Materials Irradiation of normal human skin fibroblasts using IR LED panels was performed in vitro, and modulation of proliferation and viability was quantified using Trypan blue dye exclusion assay. Results Fluences of 80, 160 and 320 J/cm2 resulted in statistically significantly less fibroblast proliferation than in controls, without statistically significantly less cellular viability. Conclusion IR LLLT can effectively inhibit fibroblast proliferation in vitro without altering viability and holds promise for the treatment of scars.
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