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Acne vulgaris is a prevalent skin disorder impairing both physical and psychosocial health. This study was designed to investigate the effectiveness of photodynamic therapy (PDT) combined with minocycline in moderate to severe facial acne and influence on quality of life (QOL).Ninety-five patients with moderate to severe facial acne (Investigator Global Assessment [IGA] score 3–4) were randomly treated with PDT and minocycline (n = 48) or minocycline alone (n = 47). All patients took minocycline hydrochloride 100 mg/d for 4 weeks, whereas patients in the minocycline plus PDT group also received 4 times PDT treatment 1 week apart. IGA score, lesion counts, Dermatology Life Quality Index (DLQI), and safety evaluation were performed before treatment and at 2, 4, 6, and 8 weeks after enrolment.There were no statistically significant differences in characteristics between 2 treatment groups at baseline. Minocycline plus PDT treatment led to a greater mean percentage reduction from baseline in lesion counts versus minocycline alone at 8 weeks for both inflammatory (−74.4% vs −53.3%; P < .001) and noninflammatory lesions (−61.7% vs −42.4%; P < .001). More patients treated with minocycline plus PDT achieved IGA score <2 at study end (week 8: 30/48 vs 20/47; P < .05). Patients treated with minocycline plus PDT got significant lower DLQI at 8 weeks (4.4 vs 6.3; P < .001). Adverse events were mild and manageable.Compared with minocycline alone, the combination of PDT with minocycline significantly improved clinical efficacy and QOL in moderate to severe facial acne patients.