“We recommend close surveillance by the treating physician, explaining above all preventive measures for dry skin, before treatment is commenced and early referral to a dedicated dermatologist,” Dr. Cleynen concludes. “In our experience, this meant resolution of the skin problems in many patients, and only a low number of patients needing to stop anti-TNF treatment because of the skin problem.”
She adds, “An additional important note for the physicians is the appearance of alopecia areata/universalis with this class of drugs in a few patients, which can be severe and irreversible.”
The study was partly funded by Janssen Biologics. Dr. Cleynen and some of her co-authors report financial ties to the company.