Mepacrine in Recalcitrant Cutaneous Lupus Erythematosus: Old-fashioned or Still Useful?
Sandrine Benoit, Matthias Goebeler
Treatment of recalcitrant cutaneous lupus erythematosus (CLE) is challenging. In situations where conventional treatment approaches fail mepacrine – an antimalarial/antiinflammatory drug that has fallen into oblivion in the last decades – might still be a promising option. We retrospectively analysed medical records of 10 patients with refractory CLE that were treated with mepacrine (100–200 mg/day) as mono- or combination therapy
for various time intervals between 2001 and 2013 at the University Hospital Würzburg. Mepacrine was generally well tolerated. Side effects were mild and usually resolved after reduction or cessation. Over 50% of the patients experienced amelioration of their symptoms despite a previously recalcitrant clinical course. Altogether, our data demonstrate that mepacrine still remains a useful and effective therapeutic option for other-wise treatment-resistant CLE.