Rituximab and low dose oral immune modulating treatment to maintain a sustained response in severe pemphigus patients.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Objectives: This pilot retrospective study examined the role of continuous low-dose maintenance immunomodulatory treatment (IMT) as an adjunct to rituximab (RTX) rescue therapy in severe pemphigus vulgaris (PV) and pemphigus foliaceus (PF) after a complete response (CR) to RTX was achieved. Materials and methods: Ten severe pemphigus patients who received RTX rescue therapy were evaluated after achieving CR. The post-RTX clinical course and long-term follow up was compared between patients who adhered to a low recommended dose (LRMD) to patients who were non-compliant with LRMD. Results: Five patients relapsed due to discontinuing or tapering their LRMD therapy, whereas the five patients who adhered to their maintenance therapy did not experience a relapse after the initial post-RTX CR. A combination of increasing or adding IMTs and initiating subsequent RTX cycles was used to regain control in relapsed patients. Conclusions: We propose an alternative treatment strategy utilizing RTX as a rescue agent in combination with long-term LRMD as a means to maintain a sustained long-term CR post-RTX therapy in severe pemphigus patients. This strategy could prevent disease flares and the need for additional RTX cycles and higher dosages of immunomodulatory therapies.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Keeley, JM; Bevans, SL; Jaleel, T; Sami, N

Published Date

  • June 2019

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 30 / 4

Start / End Page

  • 340 - 345

PubMed ID

  • 30086663

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1471-1753

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1080/09546634.2018.1510173


  • eng

Conference Location

  • England