Keloids and hypertrophic scars are the most common types of pathological scarring. Traditionally, keloids have been considered as a result of aberrant wound healing, involving excessive fibroblast participation that is characterized by hyalinized collagen bundles. However, the usefulness of this characterization has been questioned. In recent years, studies have reported the appropriate use of verapamil for keloids and hypertrophic scars.
Searches were conducted on the databases Medline, Embase, Cochrane, PubMed, and China National Knowledge Infrastructure from 2006 to July 2016. State12.0 was used for literature review, data extraction, and meta-analysis. Treatment groups were divided into verapamil and nonverapamil group. Nonverapamil group includes steroids and intense pulsed light (IPL) therapy. Total effective rates include cure rate and effective rate. Cure: skin lesions were completely flattened, became soft and symptoms disappeared. Efficacy: skin lesions subsided, patient significantly reduced symptoms. Inefficient definition of skin was progression free or became worse. Random-effects model was used for the meta-analysis.
Six studies that included 331 patients with keloids and hypertrophic scars were analyzed. Analysis of the total effective rate of skin healing was performed. The total effective rates in the two groups were 54.07% (verapamil) and 53.18% (nonverapamil), respectively. The meta-analysis showed that there was no difference between the two groups. We also compared the adverse reactions between the verapamil treatment group and the steroids treatment group in two studies, and the result indicated that the verapamil group showed less adverse reactions.
There were no differences between the application of verapamil and nonverapamil group in keloids and hypertrophic scars treatment. Verapamil could act as an effective alternative modality in the prevention and treatment of keloid and hypertrophic scars. A larger number of studies are required to confirm our conclusion.