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Indian J Dent. 2015 Jan-Mar;6(1):14-9. doi: 10.4103/0975-962X.151692.

Relative efficacy of pimecrolimus cream and triamcinolone acetonide paste in the treatment of symptomatic oral lichen planus.

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Department of Oral Medicine and Radiology, Sri Dharmasthala Manjunatheshwara College of Dental Sciences and Hospital, Dharwad, India.
Department of Oral Medicine and Radiology, College of Dental Sciences and Hospital, Davangere, Karnataka, India.
Department of Oral Medicine and Radiology, MAHE Institute of Dental Sciences and Hospital, Mahe, Pondicherry, India.



Oral lichen planus (OLP) is a relatively common, chronic inflammatory condition that frequently presents with symptoms of pain and burning sensation. It is generally a very unrelenting disorder despite several kinds of treatment. Only symptomatic OLP requires treatment, and it remains a challenging predicament. Efforts are made in a sustained manner for searching for novel therapies for symptomatic OLP. Therefore, this study was aimed to compare the efficacy of treatment with topical pimecrolimus cream 1% with that of triamcinolone acetonide oral paste 0.1% in subjects with symptomatic OLP.


A prospective, parallel-group, randomized, active control clinical study was conducted among 30 symptomatic OLP subjects (20 females and 10 males, with 15 patients in each treatment group) treated with topical pimecrolimus 1% cream and triamcinolone acetonide 0.1% oral paste four times daily for two consecutive months and treatment-free follow-up was performed for 2 months. Pain or burning sensation, mean clinical score and presence of erythematous areas were assessed. The data obtained were statistically analyzed using Wilcoxon's Rank test and the Mann Whitney test.


Subjects in both the groups showed significant improvement in symptom scores; however, the overall treatment response was higher in the pimecrolimus group compared with the triamcinolone acetonide group. On intergroup comparison, there was no statistically significant difference between the groups in the reduction in burning sensation (P = 0.18) and erythematous area (P = 0.07), but there was a statistically highly significant improvement in reduction of clinical scoring (P < 0.01%). Following the termination of the treatment, sustained remission of symptoms and long-lasting therapeutic effects was detected in 93.3% of the patients treated with pimecrolimus.


Topical pimecrolimus 1% cream showed better therapeutic response compared with triamcinolone acetonide 0.1% oral paste in subjects with symptomatic OLP.


Oral lichen planus; pimecrolimus; triamcinolone acetonide

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