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Safety and efficacy of topical, fixed‐dose combination calcipotriene (0.005%) and betamethasone (0.064% as dipropionate) gel in adolescent patients with scalp and body psoriasis: a phase II trial

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Psoriasis is a disease that commonly manifests in adolescence. Up to half of adults with psoriasis develop it before the age of 20. Topical formulations containing corticosteroids and/or vitamin D3 analogs are recommended for treatment.


This phase II study aimed to evaluate the safety, including any potential effect on the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis and calcium metabolism, and efficacy of fixed-dose combination calcipotriene (0.005%) and betamethasone (0.064% as dipropionate) (Cal/BD) gel in adolescents with psoriasis.


Patients aged 12 to <17 years, with at least mild psoriasis on the body and scalp, received topical Cal/BD gel once daily for ≤8 weeks. Safety response criteria included adverse drug reactions [ADRs; any adverse event (AE) possibly or probably related to treatment as determined by the investigator; a primary response criterion] and AEs (a secondary response criterion). Only treatment-emergent AEs (events that occurred after the first application of Cal/BD gel or events which started before this and increased in intensity after the first application of Cal/BD gel) are presented here. Efficacy response criteria included controlled disease, by physician's global assessment of disease severity (PGA), following Cal/BD gel treatment.


A total of 107 patients (median age 14 years; range 12-16) were enrolled and treated. Eight ADRs were observed in 7 (7%) patients and 38 (36%) patients experienced ≥1 AE. The most common AEs were headache [6 (6%) patients], nasopharyngitis [6 (6%) patients] and blood parathyroid hormone increased [4 (4%) patients]. One severe AE was reported (attempted suicide) but was considered unrelated to treatment. At the end of treatment, 58% of patients had controlled disease on the body and 69% on the scalp according to PGA.


In this uncontrolled phase II study, Cal/BD gel was well tolerated and effective for treating scalp and body psoriasis in adolescents.

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