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May 1999

Oral Psoralen–UV-A for Systemic Scleroderma

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Arch Dermatol. 1999;135(5):603-604. doi:10-1001/pubs.Arch Dermatol.-ISSN-0003-987x-135-5-dlt0599

Systemic sclerosis is an autoimmune connective tissue disorder that is characterized by massive deposition of collagen in the skin and/or visceral organs. Attempts to treat the disease have included therapy with anti-inflammatory drugs, immunosuppressive agents, penicillamine, colchicine, calcitonin, retinoids, interferon gamma, and extracorporeal photochemotherapy.1 Recently, bath psoralen UV-A (PUVA) therapy was administered successfully to patients with circumscribed scleroderma and to a few patients with systemic sclerosis.2,3 Encouraged by this handful of positive reports, we examined whether standard oral PUVA therapy would be an effective treatment for systemic sclerosis. Since there would be no need for special bath facilities, oral PUVA would be much easier to administer and offer to patients on an outpatient basis.

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