Satchell AC, Saurajen A, Bell C, Barnetson RS
Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, 2002
Dandruff appears to be related to the yeast Pityrosporum ovale. Tea tree oil has antifungal properties with activity against P ovale and may be useful in the treatment of dandruff.
We conducted a randomized, single-blind, parallel-group study to investigate the efficacy and tolerability of 5% tea tree oil and placebo in patients with mild to moderate dandruff.
One hundred twenty-six male and female patients, aged 14 years and older, were randomly assigned to receive either 5% tea tree oil shampoo or placebo, which was used daily for 4 weeks. The dandruff was scored on a quadrant-area-severity scale and by patient self-assessment scores of scaliness, itchiness, and greasiness.
The 5% tea tree oil shampoo group showed a 41% improvement in the quadrant-area-severity score compared with 11% in the placebo group (P <.001). Statistically significant improvements were also observed in the total area of involvement score, the total severity score, and the itchiness and greasiness components of the patients’ self-assessments. The scaliness component of patient self-assessment improved but was not statistically significant. There were no adverse effects.
Five percent tea tree oil appears to effective and well tolerated in the treatment of dandruff.
Satchell AC, Saurajen A, Bell C, et al. Treatment of dandruff with 5% tea tree oil shampoo. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2002;47(6):852-855.