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Keywords:

  • psoriasis;
  • psoriatic arthritis;
  • therapy;
  • biologics;
  • combination therapy

Summary

Background: Monotherapy with TNF-α inhibitors does not always produce a sufficient response in psoriasis patients. Combinations of TNF-α antagonists such as adalimumab with systemic antipsoriatic therapies such as methotrexate are not approved for use in psoriasis, and the published data are scarce.

Patients and methods: The charts of 39 psoriasis patients from 6 dermatology departments were reviewed retrospectively. All patients were given adalimumbab with another systemic antipsoriatic drug.

Results: Combination therapy with methotrexate was most common (n = 32), followed by acitretin (n = 4) and cyclosporine (n = 3). Combination therapy with methotrexate lasted 10.8 ± 11.2 months (mean), with cyclosporine for 6.8 ± 3.3 months, and with acitretin 12.9 ± 12.4 months. Combinations were effective in the majority of patients: 30/39 (76.9 %) had a good (n = 9) or excellent (n = 21) response. Two patients had a moderate response and 7 patients had a poor response and were switched to another treatment. Overall, safety was very good. Eighteen patients experienced 24 adverse events; none was severe and/or required hospitalization. Of these, 10/24 adverse events were infections, most often infections of the upper respiratory tract (n = 5), bronchitis (n = 2), and influenza (n = 1).

Conclusions: Combinations of adalimumab with traditional systemic antipsoriatic treatments offer a promising method for managing severe or recalcitrant psoriasis. More data are needed to determine the long-term safety and efficacy of these combinations.