SYSTEMATIC REVIEW
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Comparative effectiveness of different therapies for treating striae distensae: A systematic review and network meta-analysis.

Medicine (Baltimore) 2020 September 26
BACKGROUND: Striae distensae (SD) are common and aesthetically undesirable dermal lesions. The aim of this study is to comprehensively evaluate the effectiveness of different therapies in treating striae distensae using network meta-analysis.

METHODS: A systematic search of electronic databases up to December 1, 2019 was conducted. Randomized controlled trails (RCTs) examining the effectiveness of different methods in treating striae distensae were included. The primary outcomes are clinical effective rate and patient's satisfaction degree. Risk of bias was assessed by the Cochrane risk of bias tool. Network meta-analysis was based on Bayesian framework.

RESULTS: Fourteen trails that met the criteria with 651 subjects were included. The results of the network meta-analysis show that topical tretinoin combined bipolar radiofrequency showed the highest probability of being the best method to improve the clinical effectiveness and patient satisfaction rate of treating SD (84.5% and 95.7% respectively), closely followed by bipolar radiofrequency (75.3% and 84.3% respectively). Among laser treatment, CO2 fractional laser is superior to other lasers in the clinical effectiveness and patient satisfaction (72.0% and 58.1% respectively). Statistics showed the topical tretinoin was the worst-performing option in improving the clinical effectiveness and patient satisfaction rate of SD treatment (5.4% and 5.1% respectively).

CONCLUSION: Based on the results of network meta-analysis, we recommend treating striae distensae with bipolar radio frequency combined topical tretinoin. The commonly used CO2 fractional laser can be considered as alternative treatment candidate. Additional large-scale RCTs are necessary to obtain more precise estimates of their relative efficacy.

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