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Skin Pharmacol Physiol. 2008;21(3):181-7. doi: 10.1159/000131082. Epub 2008 Jun 3.

Activity of different desoximetasone preparations compared to other topical corticosteroids in the vasoconstriction assay.

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Klinik und Poliklinik für Dermatologie und Allergologie der Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, München, Deutschland.



We report on a double-blind, vehicle-controlled, single-center confirmatory study with random assignment. The purpose of the study was to investigate the topical bioavailability of different topical corticosteroid formulations in healthy human beings focussing on desoximetasone (DM).


Two DM 0.25% formulations [ointment (DM-o) and fatty ointment (DM-fo, water-free); class III corticosteroids], the corresponding active ingredient-free vehicles and three comparators of different strength [clobetasol propionate 0.05% (CP 0.05%), fatty ointment, class IV; hydrocortisone (HC) 1%, fatty ointment, class I, and betamethasone (BM) 0.05%, fatty ointment, class III] were tested using the vasoconstriction assay. The degree of vasoconstriction (blanching) in the treatment field was compared to the one found in untreated control fields using chromametric measurements and clinical assessment.


DM-o 0.25%, DM-fo 0.25% and BM 0.05% showed similar vasoconstrictive potential, i.e., clear blanching. In fact, both DM preparations were proven to be noninferior to BM 0.05%, while CP 0.05% was found a little less active. HC 1.0% and the DM vehicles showed no clear-cut vasoconstrictive effect. No adverse events related to the study medications were observed. Good topical bioavailability of both DM formulations was detected by chromametric measurement and clinical assessment.

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