Dermoscopic Features of Psoriatic Nails and Their Correlation to Disease SeverityRead the full article
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Interleukin-15 and Tumor Necrosis Factor-α in Iraqi Patients with Alopecia Areata
Background. Alopecia areata (AA) is a common form of noncicatricial hair loss of unknown cause, affecting 0.1-0.2% of the general population. Most evidence supports the hypothesis that it is disease of the hair follicle of autoimmune nature mediated by T-cells, with important cytokine role. Objective of the Study. The objective of this study is to study the association and changes in serum levels of interleukin-15 (IL-15) and tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) in patients with AA in relation to the type, activity, and disease duration. Patients and Methods. Thirty-eight patients with AA and 22 individuals without the disease as controls were enrolled in this case-controlled study conducted in the Department of Dermatology in the Al-Kindy Teaching Hospital and Baghdad Medical City, Iraq, during a period from the 1st of April 2021 to the 1st of December 2021. Serum concentrations of IL-15 and TNF-α assessed using the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Results. The mean serum concentration values for IL-15 and TNF-α were higher significantly in patients with AA than in controls (2.35 versus 0.35 pg/mL and 50.11 versus 20.92 pg/mL, respectively). IL-15 and TNF-α showed no statistically significant differences in level in terms of the type, duration, and activity of the disease, but TNF-α significantly higher in those with totalis-type than in other types. Conclusion. Both IL-15 and TNF-α are markers for alopecia areata. The level for these biomarkers was not affected by duration or disease activity, but it was affected by the type of disease, as the concentrations of IL-15 and TNF-α were higher in patient with Alopecia totalis than in other types of Alopecia.
Severe Cutaneous Adverse Drug Reactions at a Tertiary Care Center in Saudi Arabia
Background. Severe cutaneous adverse drug reactions (SCARs), although rare, are known to be associated with significant morbidity and mortality. SCARs include drug reaction with eosinophilia and systemic symptoms (DRESS), Stevens–Johnson syndrome/toxic epidermal necrolysis (SJS/TEN), and acute generalized exanthematous pustulosis (AGEP). Studies on SCARs are limited in Saudi Arabia. This study aims to characterize SCARs at a tertiary care center in Saudi Arabia. Methods. A cross-sectional study was conducted at King Abdulaziz Medical City, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. All inpatient and emergency department consultations to dermatology were electronically reviewed during the period from January 2016 to December 2020. All patients who developed an adverse cutaneous drug reaction were enrolled. Detailed analysis was performed only for SCARs. The culprit medication was determined based on the latency period, history of previous intake of the medication, and drug notoriety. Results. There were 3050 hospital consultations to dermatology during the study period. Cutaneous adverse drug reactions constituted 253 (8.3%) cases. A total of 41 patients with SCARs were identified, accounting for 16.2% of all cutaneous drug reactions. Antibiotics and anticonvulsants were the most common causative drug groups accounting for 28 (68.3%) and 9 (22%) cases, respectively. DRESS was the most common SCAR. The latency period was the longest for DRESS and shortest for AGEP. Vancomycin was responsible for approximately a third of DRESS cases. Piperacillin/tazobactam was the most common cause for SJS/TEN and AGEP. The majority of drugs causing AGEP were antibiotics. The mortality rate was the highest in SJS/TEN (5/11 (45.5%)), followed by DRESS (1/23 (4.4%)) and AGEP (1/7 (14.3%)). Conclusion. SCARs are rare in Saudis. DRESS appears to be the most common SCAR in our region. Vancomycin is responsible for most cases of DRESS. SJS/TEN had the highest mortality rate. More studies are required to further characterize SCARs in Saudi Arabia and Arabian Gulf countries. More importantly, thorough studies of HLA associations and lymphocyte transformation tests among Arabs with SCARs are likely to further improve patient care in the Arabian Gulf region.
Dupilumab: Direct Cost and Clinical Evaluation in Patients with Atopic Dermatitis
Health care spending in Italy is high and continues to increase; assessing the long-term health and economic outcomes of new therapies is essential. Atopic dermatitis (AD) is a chronic, pruritic, immune-mediated inflammatory dermatosis, a clinical condition that significantly affects patients’ quality of life at a high cost and requires continuous care. This retrospective study aimed to assess the direct cost and adverse drug reactions (ADRs) of Dupilumab and patients’ clinical outcomes. All AD patients treated with Dupilumab at the Sassari University Hospital, Italy, between January 2019 and December 2021 were included. Eczema Area Severity Index, Dermatology Life Quality Index, and Itch Numeric Rating Scale scores were measured. ADRs and drug expenses were analyzed. A statistically significant posttreatment improvement was observed for all the indices measured: EASI (), DLQI (), NRS (). The total expenditure for Dupilumab, in the observed period, amounted to € 589.748,66 for 1358 doses, and a positive correlation was shown between annual expenditure and delta percentage of variation pre- and posttreatment for the clinical parameters evaluated.
Suggested Guidelines for the Treatment of Mycosis Fungoides in Countries with Limited Resources
The treatment options for mycosis fungoides (MF) have been expanding but unfortunately many of the currently used treatment modalities are unavailable in Egypt and other African/Arab countries. In addition, there is a lack of consensus on the treatment of hypopigmented MF (HMF), which is a frequently encountered variant in our population. We aimed to develop regional treatment guidelines based on the international guidelines but modified to encompass the restricted treatment availability and our institutional experience. Special attention was also given to studies conducted on patients with skin phototype (III-IV). Treatment algorithm was formulated at Ain-Shams cutaneous lymphoma clinic through the collaboration of dermatologists, haematologists, and oncologists. Level of evidence is specified for each treatment option. For HMF, phototherapy is recommended as a first line treatment, while low-dose methotrexate is considered a second line. For early classical MF, we recommend Psoralen-ultraviolet A (PUVA), which is a well-tolerated treatment option in dark phenotype. Addition of either retinoic acid receptor (RAR) agonist and/or methotrexate is recommended as a second line. Total skin electron beam (TSEB) is considered a third-line option. For advanced stage, PUVA plus RAR agonist and/or methotrexate is recommended as first line, TSEB or monochemotherapy is considered a second line option. Polychemotherapy is regarded as a final option. All patients with complete response (CR) enter a maintenance and follow-up schedule. We suggest a practical algorithm for the treatment of MF for patients with dark phenotype living in countries with limited resources.
Differential Expression of Claudin 1 and 4 in Basal Cell Carcinoma of the Skin
Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is the most common human malignancy. The biological behavior of this entity is remarkably indolent. Claudin plays an important role in tight junctions, regulating paracellular passage of variable substance including growth factors and maintaining the polarity of epithelia. Up- or downregulated claudin expression has been reported in many cancers. Nevertheless, claudin expression in BCC of the skin remains unclear. We therefore examined the status of claudin 1 and 4 expressions in BCC and adjacent normal skin by immunohistochemistry (IHC). Our IHC results demonstrated high claudin 1 expression and low claudin 4 expression in 33 of 34 lower-grade BCCs. In lower-grade BCC, claudin 1 was increased and claudin 4 was decreased compared with the normal skin. Claudin 1 was inclined to be highly expressed in the membrane and cytoplasm of tumour cells in the periphery of tumour nest. Conversely, almost all lower-grade BCCs (33/34) and one of two higher-grade BCC lacked or showed focal positivity for claudin 4. These results imply that the expression pattern is characteristics of lower-risk BCC. Interestingly, one of the two higher-grade BCCs demonstrated the converse expression patterns of claudins, with decreased claudin 1 and increased claudin 4. The combination of immunohistochemical claudin 1 and 4 expression may offer a useful ancillary tool for the pathological diagnosis of BCC. Furthermore, membranous and intracellular claudins may present future therapeutic targets for uncontrollable BCC.
Designing a Band for Vehicles’ Drivers Induced by Ultraviolet and Infrared Radiations
Background. Solar radiations that reach the Earth can be divided into ultraviolet, visible light, and infrared. Overexposure to these radiations can facilitate adverse skin diseases such as sunburn, skin cancer, and photoaging. People who drive vehicles for an extended period are likely to develop skin cancer in the exposed body area. Method. This research proposes a wearable protective device around the upper arm to measure the transmitted radiation through the front and the side windows. A novel skin type classification algorithm using a color sensor was created to provide an accurate skin type identification. Also, the device was programmed to calculate the time before sunburn occurrence based on the ultraviolet index, sunscreen’s sun protection factor, and skin type. Results. The prototype was tested inside a Toyota Camry model 2001 vehicle with an accuracy of 97%. The front window had transmitted more infrared radiation compared to the side window. The highest recorded value was 76.76 mW/cm2. On the other hand, the side window had transmitted more ultraviolet compared to the front window as it lacks the protective polyvinyl butyral layer that the front window has. The highest recorded ultraviolet index was 3.5. Conclusion. These results highlight the importance of wearing the designed solar band and using appropriate UV and IR protection while driving a vehicle to prevent skin diseases from occurring.