Treating Granuloma Annulare

If you have granuloma annulare, you’ll recognize the image above. While it isn’t necessarily a rare condition, it’s certainly not so common that I see encounter it daily - once a week is [retty normal for our practice.

Unfamiliar with this condition? Put in a nutshell, granuloma annulare essentially means that your own immune system is attacking your skin. It is visible on the skin and unfortunately, no preceding symptoms give any indication that this is coming. As a result, patients are often quite shocked with how it looks and it’s a major source of concern for them.

If they do not respond to local application of steroids, their next step would be to use systemic medicines with a slight risk, so that option is possible. The downside is that it isn’t usually covered by insurance, but since so many patients dislike the appearance so much, many are often willing to pay for the possibility of the treatment helping them.

That’s why I was excited to read about the prospect of using lasers to treat this condition. In a study carried out using three different lasers researchers found all of them were successful for the treatment of granuloma annulare. However, their review was limited by the low number of cases and lack of well-defined studies, which highlights the need for randomized controlled trials to provide better evidence regarding the efficacy of laser treatment for this condition. I look forward to seeing more treatments surface!

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