Author(s): Arellano I, Cestari T, OcampoCandiani J, AzulayAbulafia L, Bezerra Trindade Neto P,
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Abstract BACKGROUND: The relapsing nature of melasma emphasizes the need to maintain efficacy achieved after acute treatment. OBJECTIVE: To compare clinical efficacy and safety of two 6-month Triple Combination (TC; containing fluocinolone acetonide, hydroquinone and tretinoin) maintenance regimens in subjects with moderate to severe melasma, after daily treatment up to 8 weeks. METHODS: This randomized, investigator-blinded, controlled study had a maintenance phase of 6 months. Sixteen centres in Brazil and Mexico enrolled 242 subjects 18 years or older attaining no or mild melasma after 8 weeks of daily TC applications. Subjects were randomized to receive TC in a twice weekly or tapering regimen [3/week (1st month), 2/week (2nd month), 1/week (4th month)]. Efficacy and safety measurements included median time to relapse and relapse-free rate, Global Severity Score, Melasma Area and Severity Index score (MASI), subject's assessment, quality of life questionnaire (MelasQol), and adverse events. RESULTS: The majority (78.8\%) had no or mild melasma (GSS ≤ 1) at week 8 and entered maintenance phase. After 6 months, 53\% of patients remained relapse-free with improved quality of life, and time to relapse was similar between groups (about 190 days). Melasma severity at study entry, not maintenance baseline, influenced relapse rate. The twice weekly regimen tended to show better effectiveness in postponing relapse in severe melasma. Both regimens were safe. CONCLUSIONS: After resolution of melasma with TC, maintenance therapy over 6 months was successful in preventing relapse in over half of the patients who entered maintenance phase. Prescribing medicines should be adapted to patients based on melasma severity. © 2011 The Authors. Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology © 2011 European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology.
This article was published in J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol
and referenced in Dermatology and Dermatologic Diseases