Author(s): MiddelkampHup MA, Bos JD, RiusDiaz F, Gonzalez S, Westerhof W
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Abstract BACKGROUND: The first choice treatment for vitiligo vulgaris is narrow-band UVB (NB-UVB), but no satisfactory treatment exists. OBJECTIVES: To investigate if Polypodium leucotomos, an antioxidative and immunomodulatory plant extract, improves NB-UVB-induced repigmentation. METHODS: Fifty patients with vitiligo vulgaris randomly received 250 mg oral P. leucotomos or placebo three times daily, combined with NB-UVB twice weekly for 25-26 weeks. RESULTS: Repigmentation was higher in the P. leucotomos group vs. placebo in the head and neck area (44\% vs. 27\%, P = 0.06). Small repigmentation increases (P = n.s.) were observed for the trunk (6\% increased repigmentation), extremities (4\%), and hands and feet (5\%) in the P. leucotomos group vs. placebo. Patients attending more than 80\% of required NB-UVB sessions showed increased repigmentation in the head and neck area in the P. leucotomos group vs. placebo (50\% vs. 19\%, P < 0.002); no significant differences were seen in the other body areas. Patients with skin types 2 and 3 showed more repigmentation in the head and neck area in the P. leucotomos group vs. placebo (47\% vs. 21\%, P = 0.01), and no significant differences were seen in the other body areas. No conclusions could be drawn on skin types 4 and 5 due to low patient numbers. CONCLUSION: There is a clear trend towards an increase in repigmentation of vitiligo vulgaris affecting the head and neck area when NB-UVB phototherapy is combined with oral P. leucotomos. This effect may be more pronounced in light skin types.
This article was published in J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol
and referenced in Journal of Clinical & Experimental Dermatology Research