Exfoliative Dermatitis Medication

Updated: Aug 15, 2019
  • Author: David Vearrier, MD, MPH; Chief Editor: Barry E Brenner, MD, PhD, FACEP  more...
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Medication

Medication Summary

Treatment of the underlying illness is key since exfoliative dermatitis resists treatment until the basic disease is treated. Cyclosporine has been reported to be effective, [10]  as has etanercept. [11]

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Corticosteroids

Class Summary

These agents have anti-inflammatory properties and cause profound and varied metabolic effects. They modify the body's immune response to diverse stimuli. They also are used to treat idiopathic and acquired autoimmune disorders.

Prednisone (Deltasone, Orasone, Meticorten)

Prednisone is a glucocorticoid that readily is absorbed from the GI tract. It is used primarily for anti-inflammatory effects in disorders of many organ systems.

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Antihistamines

Class Summary

These agents are used to treat minor allergic reactions and anaphylaxis. They are used for relief of pruritus.

Diphenhydramine (Benadryl, Benylin)

Diphenhydramine is for symptomatic relief of symptoms caused by the release of histamine in allergic reactions. It may control itching by blocking the effects of endogenously released histamine.

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Immunosuppressives

Class Summary

These agents interfere in the immune processes that promote inflammation. They are used to relieve chronic severe dermatitis.

Cyclosporine (Neoral, Sandimmune, Gengraf)

Cyclosporine has been demonstrated to cause remission in some patients. It has improved the overall prognosis of exfoliative dermatitis.

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Antirheumatic, Disease Modifying

Class Summary

These agents modulate inflammatory and immune responses.

Etanercept (Enbrel)

Etanercept is a soluble p75 TNF receptor fusion protein (sTNFR-Ig). It inhibits TNF binding to cell surface receptors, which, in turn, decreases inflammatory and immune responses. It has been reported to be effective. There is no current FDA approval/indication for the use of this drug with exfoliative dermatitis.

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