What topical therapies are indicated in the treatment of cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (CTCL)?

Updated: Aug 15, 2018
  • Author: Lauren C Pinter-Brown, MD; Chief Editor: Emmanuel C Besa, MD  more...
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Topical mycosis fungoides treatments, such as topical steroids, topical retinoids, topical chemotherapy, and light treatment that may be enhanced by the ingestion of psoralen, are used to induce remissions, which may be lengthy in patients whose disease is largely confined to the skin. In the patch or plaque stage of the disease, the following topical treatments are generally used:

  • Topical steroids

  • Topical retinoids

  • Topical chemotherapy - Eg, nitrogen mustard or bischloroethylnitrosourea (BCNU)

  • Ultraviolet B (UV-B) light treatment or UV-A light treatment enhanced with psoralen (PUVA)

  • Total-body electron beam radiation

These modalities are also used in combination with systemic modalities (eg, PUVA plus interferon) for higher-stage disease.

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