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Research

Novel Treatment Using Low-Dose Naltrexone for Lichen Planopilaris

Title
Novel Treatment Using Low-Dose Naltrexone for Lichen Planopilaris
Publication Type
Journal Article
Research Type
Human
Reported as
Case Report/Series/Restrospective Study
Date
November 16, 2017
Authors
Strazzulla LC, Avila L, Lo Sicco K, Shapiro J.
Institution
New York University
Link
Abstract

Lichen planopilaris (LPP) is a variant of lichen planus that affects the scalp causing scarring hair loss. Patients also frequently experience symptoms of scalp itch, pain, and burning. To date, there are no long-term remittive nor curative therapies available. Low-dose naltrexone has anti-inflammatory properties and has recently been described in the context of treating autoimmune conditions. This retrospective medical record review describes four LPP patients treated with low-dose (3 milligrams per day) naltrexone. This medication provided benefit in these four patients including reduction in symptoms of pruritus, clinical evidence of inflammation of the scalp, and disease progression. All patients tolerated naltrexone without adverse effects. This is the first case series demonstrating the beneficial effects of low-dose naltrexone for patients with LPP. This medication was well-tolerated by the patients and is cost-effective.

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