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The prompt use of rituximab could decrease adverse effects in patient with pemphigus vulgaris: A preliminary evaluation

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Marco Carrozzo


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© 2019 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons LtdBackground: The systemic use of corticosteroid is the treatment of choice for patients with pemphigus vulgaris (PV), but adverse effects are frequent. To date, the use of rituximab (RTX) for PV patients is usually indicated when they failed first-line immunosuppressive therapies. The early use of RTX could theoretically lessen adverse effects. Methods: We performed a single-center study on patients with predominantly oral PV, treated with systemic corticosteroid and the prompt use of 1000 mg of intravenous RTX two weeks apart. We evaluated the clinical response and the reported adverse effect during a period of 24 months, comparing those with a previously published series. Results: The study group comprised 11 patients, while the control group comprised 98 patients. The average time to achieve complete clinical remission was 3.2 ± 2.72 months. Study group took steroids for a mean time of 11.09 ± 2.02 months, and they are all actually disease-free with no medication. Only three patients (27.3%) developed plain side effects. The effect of the length of the corticosteroid therapy on the side effects (also adjusted by sex, age, and clinical oral involvement) was statistically different in the two groups: the prompt use of RTX reduced of 94% the chance to have adverse effects (P =.001). Conclusions: This is the first report of the use of RTX as first line of therapy for PV patients with predominantly oral involvement. With the proposed regimen, the adverse effects have been minimized compared with classic systemic corticosteroid-centered therapy. Multi-center randomized controlled trail is however necessary.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Arduino PG, Broccoletti R, Carbone M, Conrotto D, Sciannameo V, Gambino A, Cabras M, Carrozzo M, Baldovino S

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of Oral Pathology and Medicine

Year: 2020

Volume: 49

Issue: 2

Pages: 177-180

Print publication date: 07/02/2020

Online publication date: 05/12/2019

Acceptance date: 03/12/2019

ISSN (print): 0904-2512

ISSN (electronic): 1600-0714

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell


DOI: 10.1111/jop.12982

PubMed id: 31804741


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