Lenalidomide for refractory cutaneous manifestations of pediatric systemic lupus erythematosus

E Y Wu, L E Schanberg, E C Wershba, C E Rabinovich
Lupus 2017, 26 (6): 646-649
Objective Cutaneous manifestations of pediatric systemic lupus erythematosus cause significant morbidity. Lenalidomide, a thalidomide analogue, has shown promise treating cutaneous lupus erythematosus in adults. Our objective was to evaluate lenalidomide's efficacy and safety in treating refractory cutaneous manifestations of pediatric systemic lupus erythematosus. Methods We performed a retrospective chart review of 10 adolescents who received lenalidomide for recalcitrant cutaneous lupus erythematosus. Information was gathered at drug initiation and 6-month follow-up. The Wilcoxon matched-pairs signed-rank test was used to assess change in quantitative parameters of disease activity. Results Nine subjects were girls and six were African-American. Indications for lenalidomide treatment included alopecia, nasal and oral ulcers, extensive malar rash, discoid lesions, bullous lesions, panniculitis, cutaneous vasculitis, and Raynaud's phenomenon with digital ulcerations. Within 6 months, all patients demonstrated complete or near resolution based on physician report. Prednisone dose decreased from a mean 23.5 mg (SD± 13.3) to 12.25 mg (SD± 9.2) ( P= 0.008). Sedimentation rate decreased from a mean 29 mm/hour (SD± 31.5) to 17 mm/hour (SD± 18.1) ( P= 0.004). Lenalidomide was well tolerated. Conclusion Lenalidomide is an effective and safe treatment for a spectrum of dermatological conditions in pediatric systemic lupus erythematosus. Its use may allow a reduction in prednisone dose and decreased disfigurement. Prospective study is needed to clarify lenalidomide's role in treating cutaneous manifestations of systemic lupus erythematosus.

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