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Derm News: 2007.20(3)

Fumaric acid esters in the management of severe psoriasis

Clinical and Experimental Dermatology, 32(3):246-249
L. Brewer, S. Rogers


Fumaric acid esters (FAEs) offer an effective alternative to patients with psoriasis in whom other systemic agents are contraindicated or have failed.


We assessed the efficacy and side effect profile of FAEs in a group of patients with psoriasis.


A retrospective study was carried out on patients treated with FAEs over 21 months. Information was gathered from patients' notes. Dosage, response and side effects were recorded.


In total, 31 patients were included. The mean age was 46.8 years. All patients had been treated with other modalities and 61.5% had received previous systemic treatment. There was good to excellent response in 58.6% of patients. Subjective side-effects were common (87.1%), and lymphopenia occurred in 61.3%. The drug was not tolerated by one-fifth of patients.


The relatively low toxicity and absence of hepatotoxicity makes FAEs a reasonable first-line systemic treatment in selected patients with difficult psoriasis.

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