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November 27, 1972

Complete Regressions of Mycosis Fungoides With Topical Mechlorethamine Hydrochloride

JAMA. 1972;222(9):1172. doi:10.1001/jama.1972.03210090052026

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Survival of patients with mycosis fungoides, a lymphoma initially appearing in the skin and thereafter spreading to internal organs, has not been substantially improved by chemotherapeutic measures in use over the past two decades. In only a few instances has the disease been reported to undergo complete regression following therapy.

In the past four years we have intensively treated more than 70 patients with topical mechlorethamine hydrochloride (nitrogen mustard) preparations, usually consisting of 10 mg of drug dissolved in 2 oz of water. These solutions have been applied to the entire body surface daily, or three times weekly, until disappearance of disease. Thereafter applications have been continued at less frequent intervals.

In patients with disease limited to the skin, prior to lymph node involvement, complete regression of disease has been achieved and maintained in more than 50% of cases. Duration of therapy necessary to achieve complete disappearance of disease has