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Latanoprost in the treatment of eyelash alopecia in alopecia areata universalis.

OBJECTIVES: The aim of this study was to test the efficacy of latanoprost in eyelash alopecia areata (AA).

DESIGN: This study is a 2-year prospective, non-blinded, non-randomized, bilateral eyelash alopecia controlled study.

SETTING: The setting of this study was Trichology Unit, Virgen Macarena University Hospital, Seville, Spain.

PATIENTS: We conducted a survey of 54 subjects with AA universalis treated with the protocol of the Trichology Unit of our Department. Control group comprised 10 subjects who received injections of 0.5 mg/cm(2) of triamcinolone acetonide (TAC) in their eyebrows and 1 mg/cm(2) of TAC injections in affected scalp. The treatment group included 44 subjects who received the same treatment as the control group in scalp and eyebrows but they also applied a drop of latanoprost 0.005% (50 microg/mL) ophthalmic solution in their eyelid margins every night. Subjects were reviewed every 3 months for 2 years.

RESULTS: Forty subjects finished the study and four subjects were lost to follow-up. In the treatment arm of this study, the course was well tolerated and uncomplicated. Both investigators and patients evaluated the regrowth. The results we obtained were: complete regrowth in 17.5%, moderate regrowth in 27.5%, slight regrowth in 30% and without response in 25%. Moderate and total regrowth constituted a cosmetically acceptable response. The therapy was continuous and the response remained without any side effects. No patients had cosmetically acceptable eyelash regrowth in the control group.

CONCLUSIONS: Latanoprost may be an effective drug in the treatment of eyelash AA because it induces acceptable responses (total and moderate) in 45% of the patients. A formal, blinded prospective unilateral controlled study will permit further understanding about this promising therapeutic agent for eyelash AA.

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