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Silymarin for Melasma

Melasma is a common disorder of skin pigment that occurs usually in women. Silymarin (also known as milk thistle) significantly reduces melanin production. A double-blind placebo-controlled study assessed the  benefits of topical Silymarin (SM) cream applied topically to the affected areas, twice daily for 4 weeks. Patients were advised to avoid sun exposure and to use topical sunscreen with SPF of 15 during the entire period of treatment. Patients treated with topical silymarin showed significant pigment improvement and lesion size reduction starting with the first week of therapy. Silymarin was effective in prevention of skin damage caused by U.V. sunlight. Patients' satisfaction was recorded as 100%. During the period of treatment, no local or systemic adverse effects were observed.


BMC Dermatol. 2012; 12: 18. Published online 2012 Oct 2

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