In some countries, many skin diseases are customarily treated with acupuncture, but very few controlled studies have been published. In a randomized controlled clinical trial on chloasma, acupuncture had a significantly better effect than vitamins C and E (224).
Some evidence favouring acupuncture treatment of herpes zoster (human (alpha) herpesvirus 3) has been reported. In a randomized controlled trial, laser acupuncture relieved pain and promoted formation of scar tissue much more quickly than treatment with polyinosinic acid (225).
Acupuncture is known to have an antipruritic effect. This has been shown experimentally in volunteers, suggesting that acupuncture could be used in clinical conditions associated with pruritus (226). Acupuncture with dermal needles (seven-star or plum-blossom needles) has traditionally been used in the treatment of neurodermatitis, but confirmation of its effect in a controlled clinical trial was only recently reported (227).
For the treatment of acne vulgaris, acupuncture, particularly ear acupuncture, is worth recommending if the reported therapeutic effects can be further proved (228, 229).