Cyclosporine in Treatment of Eczema

Cyclosporine is a drug designed to immobilize or suppress the immune system. It is also used in treatment of eczema.

Since the cause of eczema is related to allergies or skin abnormalities, there have been many approaches on how to effectively treat this condition. While there is no true cure for eczema, children and young adult sufferers want to get relief to carry on daily routines without digging their nails into their skin.

When eczema is stubborn, and will not behave or respond to certain treatments, one treatment has been developed to attack the source of eczema. The source of eczema is linked to the immune system. If the immune system realizes that there is an army ready to take it down, an individual's T cells will jump into action. 

A T cell is a white blood cell that works to put a hold on the immune system.  If the immune system is locked up, an allergic reaction can't be ignited.  With respect to eczema, the allergic reaction can be hampered by going after the T cells.

This treatment involves using Cyclosporine which is used to prevent an individual from rejecting an organ after transplant surgery.

Side Effects

  • Skin eruptions
  • Mood instability
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Pain in the face and head
  • Pain or weakness in muscle and joints
  • Gastrointestinal problems-heartburn, diarrhea
  • Male breast enlargement

Adverse Reactions

Like with any medications, medical professionals do warn patients, parents, or caregivers about developing a serious reaction when receiving prescribed treatments, such as Cyclosporine. Severe reactions to cyclosporine can include:

  • Severe mood instability
  • Skin discoloration such as yellowing of eyes
  • Unstable movements
  • Irritability
  • Rash that can include purple eruptions
  • Easy bruising or bleeding
  • Development of swelling in arms and legs

Dosage

Cyclosporine is taken as a liquid, pill or topical cream. When ingested as a liquid, the liquid can be prepared with orange juice or milk. Microemulsion liquid can only be mixed with orange juice or apple juice but not milk.

  • Adults: 3 mg dosage per day but not to exceed 5mg per day.
  • Children 6 to 12 months of age: Dose is based on their body weight, as with 2.5 mg to 5mg per kilogram of weight.

Precautions/Recommendations

  • Grapefruit juice affects the absorption of cyclosporine in the body.
  • Potassium affects the absorption of cyclosporine in the body, so diet must be monitored.
  • Individuals with liver or kidney problems should not be taking cyclosporine.

Effectiveness

Shown in clinical studies, cyclosporine has been effective in quickly relieving the symptoms of eczema. Unfortunately, the symptoms of eczema return and are more severe after stopping cyclosporine.


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