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Curr Probl Dermatol. 2011;40:58-70. doi: 10.1159/000321051. Epub 2011 Feb 10.

Anti-inflammatory treatment.

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Dermatology Department, University Hospital Basel, Basel, Switzerland.


Inflammatory mucosal disorders are treated conventionally with potent or superpotent topical corticosteroids. For more than 20 years, topical cyclosporine has been used in the management of oral mucous membrane affections. Recently other topically applied calcineurin inhibitors, namely tacrolimus and pimecrolimus, expanded the armamentarium for the treatment of inflammatory mucosal diseases. This chapter places its main emphasis on the efficacy and safety of topical calcineurin inhibitors in the management of different oral and genital conditions, including anogenital lichen sclerosus (LS), oral and genital lichen planus, plasma cell balanitis and vulvitis, mucous membrane pemphigoid and pemphigus vulgaris, all conditions having usually a protracted course, requiring long-lasting treatment. There is current evidence for the effectiveness of both pimecrolimus and tacrolimus in the topical treatment of inflammatory oral mucosal diseases and genital dermatoses, especially oral lichen planus and genital LS.

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