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Year : 2008  |  Volume : 74  |  Issue : 6  |  Page : 611--613

An uncontrolled, open label study of sulfasalazine in severe alopecia areata

Department of Dermatology, School of Medicine, Jahrom University of Medical Sciences, Jahrom, Iran

Correspondence Address:
Shahin Aghaei
Jahrom University of Medical Sciences, School of Medicine, Jahrom
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0378-6323.45103

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Background: Alopecia areata (AA) is an autoimmune disease mediated by T lymphocytes. Many treatments have been used but their results remain disappointing. There is a need to propose new therapeutic alternatives. Methods: During a period of 3 years, 26 patients with recalcitrant or severe AA (>40% hair loss) were enrolled in an open-label uncontrolled clinical trial. According to the response to sulfasalazine, patients were grouped into 3 categories: no hair regrowth (<10% terminal hair), partial hair regrowth (10%-90% terminal hair), and complete hair regrowth (90%-100% terminal hair). Efficacy evaluation was performed with clinical examination. Results: Twenty-two patients completed the treatment. Overall, 68.2% (15 of 22 patients) responded to therapy: 27.3% (6 of 22 patients) achieved complete hair regrowth, and 40.9% had partial hair regrowth. Seven (31.8%) patients had no hair regrowth. Of the 22 patients with complete and partial remission, 10 (45.5%) suffered a partial or complete relapse. Side effects following treatment were seen in 7 (31.8%) patients. Conclusion: Sulfasalazine could be considered as a therapeutic alternative in the treatment of AA, because of its safety profile, cosmetically acceptable efficacy, and good tolerability.


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Online since 15th March '04
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