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J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol. 2019 Feb 15. doi: 10.1111/jdv.15488. [Epub ahead of print]

Psoriasis and skin pain: real-life effectiveness of calcipotriol plus betamethasone dipropionate in aerosol foam formulation.

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Section of Dermatology, Department of Clinical Medicine and Surgery, University of Naples Federico II, Naples, Italy.
Dermatology Center of Aversa (ASL CE), Aversa, Italy.
Dermatology and Venereology Unit of the "San Gennaro" Hospital, Naples, Italy.
Department of Advanced Biomedical Sciences, University of Naples "Federico II", Napoli, Italy.



Although 40% of psoriasis patients reported skin pain, this symptom is often underestimated. A new formula of calcipotriol plus betamethasone dipropionate (Cal/BD) has been recently approved for psoriasis treatment. Therefore, we aimed to evaluate the efficacy of Cal/BD aerosol foam on skin pain of patients with plaque psoriasis.


A real-life 4-week prospective, open study on Cal/BD aerosol foam (not compared to vehicle or emollient cream) was performed in adult psoriasis patients attending three Dermatology units located in Campania region, Italy, between March and October 2018. Inclusion criteria were a history of skin pain over the last week and psoriatic involvement of the palmar area. Before (t0) and after a course of once daily application of Cal/BD aerosol foam for 4 weeks (t1), the following items were evaluated: Psoriasis Area and Severity Index (PASI), Physician Global Assessment (PGA) index of target plaque on palmar region, subjective skin pain features through Pain Qualities Assessment Scale questionnaire and skin pain threshold measured by pressure digital algometer at palmar psoriatic plaques.


Seventy-five patients (43 male, mean age of 43.2 years) were enrolled. After 4 weeks of therapy with Cal/BD aerosol foam, a significant improvement in both PASI (mean: 6.5 ± 2.1 at t0 vs. 2.3 ± 1.6 at t1) and palmar plaques PGA (mean: 3.6 at t0 vs. 1.7 at t1) was observed (P < 0.001). The mean intensity score of skin pain decreased from 7.6 to 1.3 (P < 0.001); among skin pain qualities, intense, sensible, aching and unpleasant showed the highest rate of reduction (t0-t1: 6.3, 6.3, 6.1 and 5.8, respectively). Pain threshold of palmar skin lesions increased at t1.


Our real-life study suggested that Cal/BD aerosol foam may represent a valid topical anti-psoriatic treatment, not only improving skin lesions, but also relieving cutaneous pain, thus contributing to ameliorate patients' quality of life.


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