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Narrow band UVB (311 nm), psoralen UVB (311 nm) and PUVA therapy in the treatment of early-stage mycosis fungoides: a right–left comparative study

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Psoralen ultraviolet A (PUVA) is a widely used first-line therapy for treatment of early cutaneous T-cell lymphoma. Narrow band UVB (UVB-NB) (311 nm) has been recently introduced as another effective line of treatment. It is postulated that the efficacy of UVB-NB could be enhanced by addition of psoralen. Aim:

The aim of the present work was to compare the clinical and histopathologic efficacy of PUVA and UVB-NB in the treatment of early-stage MF (stages IA, IB and IIA), and to evaluate whether psoralen adds to the efficacy of UVB-NB or not. Patients and Methods:

Twenty patients (stage IA, IB or IIA) were divided into two equal groups: group I received UVB-NB on the right body half vs. PUVA on the left side of the body for 48 sessions, and group II received PUVB-NB on the right side of the body vs. PUVA on the left side for 36 sessions. The sessions were administered three times weekly. Results:

In group I, almost equal results were obtained on both sides, i.e., UVB-NB and PUVA were equally effective in the treatment of early stages of MF, both clinically and histopathologically. In group II, PUVB-NB was found to be as effective as conventional PUVA in the treatment of early-stage mycosis fungoides, also on both clinical and histopathological grounds. Conclusion:

UVB-NB phototherapy should be included among the initial therapeutic options of mycosis fungoides in view of its efficacy, convenience, and likelihood of fewer long-term adverse effects. Addition of psoralen does not seem to enhance its therapeutic efficacy.

Keywords: PUVA; PUVB-NB; UVB-NB; comparative; mycosis fungoides; stages I and IIA

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: December 1, 2005

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