A Comparison of Treatment of Oral Lichen Planus with Topical Tacrolimus and Triamcinolone Acetonide Ointment
Ronald Laeijendecker, Bhupendra Tank, Sybren K. Dekker and H. A. Martino Neumann
Treatment of symptomatic oral lichen planus remains a challenging problem. This study compared the efficacy of topical tacrolimus ointment with triamcinolone acetonide ointment in patients with oral lichen planus. Twenty patients (group I) were treated with topical tacrolimus 0.1% ointment 4 times daily, and 20 (group II) were treated with triamcinolone acetonide 0.1% ointment 4 times daily. The clinical effect was graded after 6 weeks. In group I, 6 patients healed, 12 showed improvement and 2 showed no improvement. In group II, 2 patients healed, 7 improved and 11 showed no improvement. The most commonly reported side-effect in both groups was temporary burning or stinging at the site of application. Unfortunately, oral lesions recurred within 3–9 weeks of cessation of treatment in 13 of the 18 patients who had initially shown an improvement or were healed in group I and in 7 of the 9 patients in group II. Topical tacrolimus 0.1% ointment induced a better initial therapeutic response than triamcinolone acetonide 0.1% ointment. However, relapses occurred frequently within 3–9 weeks of the cessation of treatment.