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Observation
September 18, 2019

Treatment of Refractory Chronic Pruritus of Unknown Origin With Tofacitinib in Patients With Rheumatoid Arthritis

Author Affiliations
  • 1Division of Dermatology, Department of Medicine, Washington University School of Medicine in St Louis, St Louis, Missouri
  • 2Center for the Study of Itch, Washington University School of Medicine in St Louis, St Louis, Missouri
  • 3Department of Anesthesiology, Washington University School of Medicine in St Louis, St Louis, Missouri
  • 4Department of Pathology and Immunology, Washington University School of Medicine in St Louis, St Louis, Missouri
JAMA Dermatol. 2019;155(12):1426-1428. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2019.2804

Chronic pruritus is defined as itch lasting longer than 6 weeks and negatively affects quality of life.1,2 It affects approximately 15% of the general population, with a disproportionately higher incidence in elderly individuals. Although frequently associated with a number of well-defined primary inflammatory skin disorders such as allergic contact dermatitis or atopic dermatitis (AD), chronic pruritus often presents in the absence of any clear cause. In this context, it is referred to as chronic idiopathic pruritus or chronic pruritus of unknown origin (CPUO).3,4 Strikingly, not a single medication approved by the US Food and Drug Administration is indicated for the treatment of CPUO.

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