Combination therapy of orally administered glycyrrhizin and UVB improved active-stage generalized vitiligo
Glycyrrhizin has been used clinically for several years due to its beneficial effect on immunoglobulin E (IgE)-induced allergic diseases, alopecia areata and psoriasis. In this study, glycyrrhizin, ultraviolet B light (UVB) or a combination of both were used to treat active-stage generalized vitiligo. One hundred and forty-four patients between the ages of 3 and 48 years were divided into three groups: group A received oral compound glycyrrhizin (OCG); group B received UVB applications twice weekly, and group C received OCG+UVB. Follow-ups were performed at 2, 4, and 6 months after the treatment was initiated. The Vitiligo Area Scoring Index (VASI) and the Vitiligo Disease Activity (VIDA) instrument were used to assess the affected body surface, at each follow-up. Results showed that 77.1, 75.0 and 87.5% in groups A, B and C, respectively, presented repigmentation of lesions. Responsiveness to therapy seemed to be associated with lesion location and patient compliance. Adverse events were limited and transient. This study showed that, although the three treatment protocols had positive results, OCG and UVB combination therapy was the most effective and led to improvement in disease stage from active to stable.