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Botulinum toxin type A for the treatment of axillary Hailey-Hailey disease.

BACKGROUND: Hailey-Hailey disease is an inherited acantholytic disorder affecting the intertriginous areas of the body which is exacerbated by sweat, moisture, and friction. The disease is frequently resistant to conventional nonsurgical treatment.

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate whether chemodenervation of sweat glands would improve the course of the disease in a patient with Hailey-Hailey.

METHODS: We used low-dose treatment of the left axilla with botulinum toxin type A, the right axilla being used as a control, followed by treatment of both axillae with the optimal dose routinely used for the treatment of axillary hyperhidrosis.

RESULTS: After one treatment with a low dose of botulinum toxin type A, we observed partial improvement of the treated axilla. With subsequent treatment of both axillae with the recommended dose for axillary hyperhidrosis, we observed a sustained complete remission of the disease in the treated axillae.

CONCLUSION: Botulinum toxin type A may be an effective and safe nonsurgical alternative for the treatment of benign familial pemphigus in intertriginous areas such as the axillae.

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