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PubMed RSS Feed - -Isotretinoin-associated acne fulminans: A multicentre, retrospective study of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology Task Force on Acne, Rosacea and Hidradenitis Suppurativa


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J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol. 2023 Aug 29. doi: 10.1111/jdv.19477. Online ahead of print.


BACKGROUND: Acne fulminans (AF) is a rare severe acne entity. Although occasionally reported, it is unclear whether AF development is associated with oral isotretinoin treatment.

OBJECTIVES: To investigate the occurrence of isotretinoin-associated AF, clinical characteristics and prognosis at follow-up.

METHODS: An international, multicentre, retrospective study was performed in eight hospitals following the call of the EADV Task Force on Acne, Rosacea and Hidradenitis Suppurativa (ARHS). Characteristics of patients treated with isotretinoin before the development of AF (isotretinoin-associated acne fulminans, IAF) were compared with non-IAF (NAF).

RESULTS: Forty-nine patients diagnosed with AF from 2008 to 2022 were included (mean age 16.4 years, SD 2.9, 77.6% male). Αrthralgias/arthritis occurred in 11 patients (22.9%). AF occurred without any previous acne treatment in 26.5% of the patients. Overall, 28 patients (57.1%) developed AF after oral isotretinoin intake (IAF group), while the remaining 21 patients (42.9%) developed AF without previous oral isotretinoin administration (NAF group). IAF occurred after a median duration of isotretinoin treatment of 45 days (IQR: 30, 90). Patients with IAF were more frequently male compared to patients with NAF (89.3% vs. 61.9%, respectively, p = 0.023). There were no differences in patients with IAF versus NAF in patient age, the duration of pre-existing acne, a family history of AF, the distribution of AF lesions or the presence of systemic symptoms or arthralgias. Regarding the management of AF, patients with IAF were treated more frequently with prednisolone (96.2%) compared to those with NAF (70%; p = 0.033) and less frequently with isotretinoin (32.1%) compared to NAF (85.7%; p < 0.001). At a median follow-up of 2.2 years, 76.4% of patients were free of AF and scarring was present in all patients.

CONCLUSIONS: No specific clinical or demographic characteristics of IAF compared with NAF could be detected, a fact that does not support IAF as a district clinical entity.

PMID:37643921 | DOI:10.1111/jdv.19477

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