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Triamcinolone, 5-fluorouracil injections both effective for keloids

09 Jan 2019

Despite comparable efficacies, triamcinolone (TAC) injections appear to be slightly superior over 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) injections for inducing keloid remission, a recent trial has found.

Researchers randomly assigned 43 patients with 50 keloid scars to receive either TAC (n=25; median age 40 years; 56 percent female) or 5-FU (n=25; median age 43 years; 40 percent female) over 6 months. The mean dosage was 8.4±5.4 mg and 25±13 mg in the respective groups.

There was no significant between-group difference in terms of treatment efficacy. Six-month remission rate was 46 percent in patients who received 5-FU vs 60 percent in those who were given TAC (p>0.05). Fattening and softening of keloids were observed in both groups.

On the other hand, TAC resulted in a significant decrease in the mean proliferation rate (11.3 percent to 7.9 percent), while 5-FU led to a significant increase (9.9 percent to 12.1 percent; p<0.05 for both).

Haemoglobin concentration at 6 months likewise significantly dropped in the TAC group (0.17±0.18 to 0.10±0.18; p<0.05), as did the blood vessel density (p<0.05). Changes in both parameters were marginal in the 5-FU group and failed to reach significance (haemoglobin concentration: 0.13±0.10 to 0.10±0.09; p>0.05 for both).

However, in terms of safety, 5-FU appeared to be the better treatment option. Significantly more patients in the TAC group developed skin atrophy (44 percent vs 8 percent) and telangiectasia (50 percent vs 21 percent; p<0.05 for both).

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