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August 1959

Double-Blind Evaluation of Trimeprazine: An Oral Antipruritic

Author Affiliations

Montgomery, Ala.

AMA Arch Derm. 1959;80(2):220-221. doi:10.1001/archderm.1959.01560200088011

Recently, a phenothiazine derivative, trimeprazine (Temaril*), was reported on1 in fairly glowing terms as being valuable in the relief of itching when taken orally. For example, Callaway and Olansky1 found that 82% of their patients with various skin conditions obtained good or excellent relief of itching while taking the drug. Because of Kligman's2 criticism of the lack of controlled, double-blind studies in the enthusiastic reports on trimeprazine, I was stimulated to determine whether the antipruritic effects ascribed this drug would stand the rigors of a controlled, double-blind evaluation.

Patient Selection

This study was carried out in 104 patients (33 males and 72 females) from private practice, who ranged in age from 10 years to 88 years. All the patients were selected on the basis of severe itching associated with common dermatologic, allergic, or systemic disorders. In general, itching had been present for periods varying from a