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Abstract

Background

Psoriasis vulgaris is a T-cell mediated disease that affects 2–3% of the worldwide white-skinned population. Fumaric acid esters are mentioned as an effective therapy for moderate-to-severe psoriasis vulgaris in adult patients in the new guidelines for psoriasis treatment.

Objectives

To obtain an insight into the use of fumaric acid esters by Dutch dermatologists in the Netherlands.

Methods

This was a cross-sectional postal survey. An anonymous survey was posted to all Dutch dermatologists. In this survey, data were collected on the extent of fumaric acid esters use, the reasons for use, the reasons for non- or limited use of fumaric acid esters, the perception of fumaric acid esters as a mono-therapy with regards to the effectiveness, the safety, the adverse events and the overall satisfaction of fumaric acid esters as a mono-therapy.

Results

Sixty-three per cent of the 300 responders indicated to prescribe fumaric acid esters for the treatment of psoriasis. About 37% of the dermatologists indicated (almost) never to prescribe it. Biologicals were considered as the most effective therapy. Fumaric acid esters were regarded as the safest therapy. They were generally well-tolerated by the patients similar to that for methotrexate according to the respondents.

Conclusion

A large proportion of the dermatologists in our survey indicated to prescribe fumaric acid esters. It is considered to be effective, safe and without adverse events profile that is favourable in the practice, also as compared with other systemic therapies such as methotrexate and biologicals.