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Anais Brasileiros de Dermatologia

On-line version ISSN 1806-4841

Abstract

AZULAY, Rubem David. Thalidomide: indications in Dermatology. An. Bras. Dermatol. [online]. 2004, vol.79, n.5, pp. 603-608. ISSN 1806-4841.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0365-05962004000500011.

Thalidomide was discovered in East Germany in 1954. It presented with several therapeutic effects: antiemetic, sedative and hypnotic. From 1959 to 1961, roughly 12,000 children born with teratogenic defects were described. Its use was consequently halted. Sheskin started using the drug again and observed its beneficial effect on erythema nodosa leprosum. Thalidomide is derived from glutamic acid. Its urinary elimination is minimal (1%). It has the following actions: anti-inflammatory, immunomodulary and antiangiogenic. It has been used with a successful therapeutic outcome on some entities, which have been studied further. The main side effect is teratogenic: limb alterations, ears, eyes and internal organs. The teratogenic effects are assumed to result from antiangiogenic action. Other side effects are cephalea, dry skin and mouth mucous, pruritus, cutaneous eruption, weight gain, hypothyroidism, neutropenia, bradycardia or tachycardia, and hypotension. It interacts with other medicine: barbiturates, chlorpromazine, reserpine, alcohol, acetaminophen, histamine, serotonin and prostaglandin.

Keywords : erythema nodosum; pruritus; thalidomide; thalidomide [adverse effects]; therapeutics.

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