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Efficacy of tacrolimus 0.1% ointment in keratosis pilaris: A prospective hospital based interventional study

 Department of Dermatology, Venereology and Leprosy, GSL Medical College, Rajamahendravaram, Andhra Pradesh, India

Correspondence Address:
Prasad Chowdary Arumilli,
Department of Dermatology, Venereology and Leprosy, GSL Medical College, Rajamahendravaram - 533 296, Andhra Pradesh
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jmedsci.jmedsci_356_20

Background: Keratosis pilaris (KP) is cosmetically displeasing and psychologically distressing. Many treatments are being tried, but they have not been very effective. There is a need for the evaluation of newer therapeutic modalities. Aims: Evaluation of efficacy and safety of tacrolimus 0.1% ointment in KP. Methods: A prospective hospital-based interventional study was conducted on 60 KP patients who presented to our outpatient department between January 2017 and June 2018. All patients were advised to apply tacrolimus ointment 0.1% twice daily to the right arm and petrolatum ointment twice daily to the left arm, over a period of 4 weeks. The treated sites were assessed using the investigator's global assessment (IGA) scale and comparing patient satisfaction scores at baseline and at the end of the treatment. Clinical and dermoscopic pictures were taken at baseline and at the end of the treatment. Results: Fifty-one patients completed the study. The IGA mean score was reduced by 0.58 in the tacrolimus group, compared to 0.39 in the petrolatum group. Although there was a statistically significant improvement in each arm, the difference in improvement between the right and left arms was not significant. However, the patient satisfaction score was higher in the tacrolimus group. Dermoscopy showed an improvement in the absence of follicular hyperkeratosis and erythema. Conclusions: Tacrolimus 0.1% ointment is an alternative and safe treatment in the treatment of KP. It has shown moderately higher patient satisfaction as compared to petrolatum and was tolerated well.


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