Advances in Psoriasis Research and Side-by-Side Treatment Review

New Insights, Treatment Updates and Comparisons

Naveed Saleh, MD, MS; Reviewed by Graeme Lipper, MD


May 31, 2017

Table 1. Topical Agents for Psoriasis for Adults

Agent Hydrocortisone 1%[4] [12] Calcipotriene 0.005% (Dovonex® cream)[12] Tazarotene 0.05%, 0.1% (available in cream and gel) (Tazorac®)[12] Calcipotriene 0.005% and betamethasone dipropionate 0.064% (Taclonex® ointment)[12]
Dosage Apply thin layer to affected area once or twice daily Apply thin layer to affected area twice daily Recommended to start with 0.05% strength. Apply thin film to affected area once daily. With gel, apply thin layer at night to a maximum 20% body surface area. Apply to affected area once daily for up to 4 weeks. Maximum weekly dose should not exceed 100 g. Treatment to more than 30% of body surface area is not recommended.
Estimated Cost per gram $1.07[13] $5.61[14] $6.30[15] $12.17[15]
Adverse Effects (list not exhaustive)[12] Long-term use can result in loss of effectiveness of drug and skin thinning Skin irritation, rash, pruritus, dermatitis, worsening of psoriasis Burning/stinging, pruritus, erythema, worsening of psoriasis, skin pain and irritation Folliculitis, burning sensation of the skin
Efficacy Mild plaque psoriasis Moderate to severe plaque psoriasis Plaque psoriasis Plaque psoriasis
Special Notes[12] Available over-the-counter Vitamin D3 derivative Retinoid.
Contraindicated in pregnancy.
Vitamin D3 derivative plus topical steroid. Also available as suspension.