Efficacy and Safety of the Betamethasone Valerate 0.1% Plaster in Mild-to-Moderate Chronic Plaque Psoriasis
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- Naldi, L., Yawalkar, N., Kaszuba, A. et al. Am J Clin Dermatol (2011) 12: 191. doi:10.2165/11539780-000000000-00000
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Background: Corticosteroids are a versatile option for the treatment of mild-to-moderate psoriasis due to their availability in a wide range of potencies and formulations. Occlusion of the corticosteroid is a widely accepted procedure to enhance the penetration of the medication, thereby improving its effectiveness. Betamethasone valerate (BMV) is a moderately potent corticosteroid that is available as a cream, ointment, and lotion. A ready-to-use occlusive dressing, which provides a continuous sustained release of BMV, has been developed for the treatment of psoriasis.
Objective: To evaluate the efficacy and safety of a new BMV 0.1% plaster compared with a BMV 0.1% cream in patients with mild-to-moderate chronic plaque psoriasis.
Methods: This was a prospective, randomized, assessor-blind, parallel-group, active-controlled, multicenter, phase III study. Eligible outpatients (aged ≥18 years) with a diagnosis of stable, chronic plaque psoriasis vulgaris with two to four plaques on extensor surfaces of limbs were randomized to receive BMV 0.1% plaster or BMV 0.1% cream for 3–5 weeks; patients with resolution of target plaques then entered a 3-month, treatment-free, follow-up period. The number of patients showing clearing of plaques (remission) at 3 weeks (primary endpoint) and at 5 weeks was independently evaluated from digitized images of target plaques by two blinded assessors, and also assessed by the investigator and patient. Additional endpoints were (i) change from baseline in target plaque size and in Psoriasis Global Assessment (PGA) score, as evaluated by the blinded assessors, investigator, and patient; (ii) change from baseline in symptom (itching, soreness) severity; (iii) treatment satisfaction and ease of use; (iv) clearing and relapse during the follow-up period; and (v) adverse events (AEs).
Results: Patients (n = 231) were screened and randomized to treatment with BMV 0.1% plaster (n = 116) and BMV 0.1% cream (n = 115). Significantly more patients achieved clearing after 3 weeks’ treatment with BMV plaster than with BMV cream (Cochran-Mantel-Haenszel test, p < 0.001); this difference was maintained at 5 weeks. The total plaque area decreased to a larger extent for the BMV plaster group compared with the BMV cream group (analysis of covariance [ANCOVA] model, p = 0.017 at week 5). PGA scores were significantly lower after 3 and 5 weeks’ treatment with BMV plaster (ANCOVA model, all p ≤ 0.016 vs BMV cream). Both treatments reduced itching and soreness to a similar degree, and the incidences of relapse during the follow-up period were comparable between treatment groups. There were no significant differences in AEs between treatment groups.
Conclusions: BMV 0.1% plaster is more efficacious than BMV 0.1% cream in the treatment of patients with mild-to-moderate chronic plaque psoriasis in a clinical setting resembling daily clinical practice.
Clinical trial number: ISRCTN68864186