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The British journal of dermatology

5-Methoxypsoralen plus ultraviolet (UV) A is superior to medium-dose UVA1 in the treatment of severe atopic dermatitis: a randomized crossover trial.


PMID 19769631

Abstract

Ultraviolet (UV) A1 and psoralen plus UVA (PUVA) are effective treatment options for severe atopic dermatitis (AD); however, their relative efficacy has not yet been determined in a head-to-head study. To compare UVA1 and oral 5-methoxypsoralen (5-MOP) plus UVA with respect to efficacy, tolerability and duration of response in patients with severe generalized AD. Forty patients were included in this randomized observer-blinded crossover trial. The patients received either 15 exposures to medium-dose UVA1 as the first treatment and, in cases of relapse, another 15 exposures to 5-MOP plus UVA as the second treatment, or vice versa. All patients were followed until 12 months after discontinuation of the last treatment. The SCORAD score was determined by a blinded investigator at baseline, after 10 and 15 treatments each and during the follow-up period. In addition, all adverse events were recorded during the whole study period. Twenty-three patients completed the crossover treatment. Both phototherapies resulted in clinical improvement; however, PUVA reduced the baseline SCORAD score to a significantly greater extent than UVA1 (mean +/- SD 54.3 +/- 25.7% vs. 37.7 +/- 22.8%; P = 0.041). The median length of remission was 4 weeks (interquartile range 4-12) after UVA1 and 12 weeks (interquartile range 4-26) after PUVA therapy (P = 0.012). PUVA provides a better short- and long-term response than medium-dose UVA1 in patients with severe AD.

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