Researchers are considering a new use for oxymetazoline after results from a recent preclinical trial showed its promise when used in conjunction with a pulsed dye laser (PDL).1
Until recently, α‐1A agonist was typically used as a nasal decongestant that works by reducing the size of dilated blood vessels in the nasal passage. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, however, approved a topical formulation of oxymetazoline as a treatment for rosacea and other facial erythema diseases in January 2017.2
In a preclinical trial, conducted by researchers from the University of California located in Irvine, Calif., investigators found that oxymetazoline, when used with PDL, caused a higher rate of vascular shutdown than a combination of saline and PDL.
Researchers began their trial by surgically installing a dorsal window on 20 mice to examine vasoconstriction. The mice were split into four groups. Each group received 10 microliters of saline or oxymetazoline, while only two of the four groups received a combination of PDL and either saline or oxymetazoline.
Over the course of seven days, researchers applied saline or oxymetazoline to the epidermal side of the dorsal windows once a day, along with PDL if it was applicable. Brightfield and laser speckle imaging was also utilized to monitor any changes.
1. Kelly A, Pai A, Lertsakdadet B, Choi B, Kelly KM. Microvascular Effects of Pulsed Dye Laser in Combination With Oxymetazoline. Lasers Surg Med. 2019;
2. Allergan Announces FDA Approval Of RHOFADE™ (Oxymetazoline Hydrochloride) Cream, 1% For The Topical Treatment Of Persistent Facial Erythema Associated With Rosacea In Adults. PR Newswire. https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/allergan-announces-fda-approval.... Published January 19 2017. Accessed December 4 2019.