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Derm News: 2006(25)

Use of Calcipotriene Cream (Dovonex® Cream) Following Acute Treatment of Psoriasis Vulgaris with the Calcipotriene/Betamethasone Dipropionate Two-Compound Product (Taclonex®): A Randomized, Parallel-Group Clinical Trial

American Journal of Clinical Dermatology
Stephen White; Ronald Vender; Diamant Thaçi; Caroline Haverkamp; Jean-Marie Naeyaert; Richard Foster; Jorge A Martinez Escribano; Frédéric Cambazard; Adrian Bibby

Introduction

A calcipotriene/betamethasone dipropionate two-compound product (Taclonex® ointment) has been shown to be safe and effective in the treatment of psoriasis over 4 weeks. Since treatment of psoriasis is generally long-term, the objective of this study was to investigate the efficacy and safety of transferring patients to maintenance treatment with calcipotriene cream (Dovonex® cream) following a 4-week treatment period with the two-compound product.

Methods

Patients with psoriasis were randomized to one of the following three treatment groups: 4 weeks of the two-compound product followed by 8 weeks of calcipotriene cream (calcipotriene cream group); 4 weeks of the two-compound product followed by 8 weeks of calcipotriene cream on weekdays and the two-compound product on weekends (alternating group); 4 weeks of the two-compound product followed by 8 weeks of vehicle of calcipotriene cream (vehicle group). All medications were applied once daily.

Results

A total of 1136 patients were randomized: 383 to the calcipotriene cream group, 377 to the alternating group, and 376 to the vehicle group. The mean percentage change in the Psoriasis Area and Severity Index from baseline to the end of the trial was -44.5% in the calcipotriene cream group, -58.4% in the alternating group, and -33.1% in the vehicle group.

The mean difference between the calcipotriene cream and vehicle groups (primary treatment comparison) was -11.7% (95% CI -17.9, -5.5), which was statistically significant (p < 0.001), and the mean difference between the alternating and vehicle groups was -24.7% (95% CI -30.9, -18.5), which was also statistically significant (p < 0.001). For the investigators' global assessment of disease severity at the end of the trial, the differences between the calcipotriene cream and vehicle groups, and between the alternating and vehicle groups, were statistically significant (p < 0.001), showing superior efficacy in the nonvehicle groups. The results were similar for the patients' global assessment of response to treatment.

There were 43 patients (11.3%) with adverse drug reactions in the calcipotriene cream group, 28 (7.6%) in the alternating group, and 32 (8.6%) in the vehicle group. There were no statistically significant differences in the incidence of adverse drug reactions in the calcipotriene cream group relative to the vehicle group (odds ratio 1.36; 95% CI 0.84, 2.21; p = 0.21), or in the alternating group relative to the vehicle group (odds ratio 0.87; 95% CI 0.51, 1.48; p = 0.61).

Conclusion

Four weeks of treatment with the calcipotriene/betamethasone dipropionate two-compound product followed by 8 weeks of maintenance treatment with calcipotriene cream is effective and safe. As an alternative maintenance regimen, treatment with calcipotriene cream on weekdays and the two-compound product on weekends is also effective and safe.


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The Derm News service provided by the Editorial Consultants of Skin Therapy Letter© and its founding editor Dr. Stuart Maddin.