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Cyclosporine shows promise in treatment of moderate-to-severe alopecia areata

25 Aug 2019

Treatment with cyclosporine results in improvements, albeit statistically nonsignificant, in the Severity of Alopecia Tool score and eyelash and eyebrow assessment scales among patients with moderate-to-severe alopecia areata (AA), a recent study has shown.

Thirty-two patients were included in the analysis, of whom 16 received cyclosporine and 16 placebo. A greater proportion of participants in the cyclosporine group achieved at least a 50-percent reduction in the Severity of Alopecia Tool score (31.3 percent vs 6.3 percent; p=0.07) and a 1-grade improvement in eyelash (18.8 percent vs 0 percent; p=0.07) and eyebrow (31.3 percent vs 0 percent; p=0.02) scale score compared with those in the placebo group.

“Small sample size and single-institution trial may limit interpretation and generalizability of these results,” the investigators said.

In another study, treatment with oral cyclosporin for moderate-to-severe AA for 3 months resulted in trends for improvement in quality of life across multiple dimensions in both disease-specific and generic measures. [J Dermatolog Treat 2019;doi:10.1080/09546634.2019.1654068]

This double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial was performed to assess the efficacy of cyclosporine compared with placebo in patients aged 18–65 years with moderate-to-severe AA. Participants were randomized 1:1 to receive 3 months of cyclosporine (4 mg/kg/d) or matching placebo.

Blinded assessments included the following: physical examination, blood biochemistry, photography, quality of life measurements, and efficacy evaluation using the Severity of Alopecia Tool score and eyelash and eyebrow assessment scales.

AA is a common autoimmune disease that often results in unpredictable hair loss with substantial psychological burden.

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