Improvement in severe onchocercal skin disease after a single dose of ivermectin

Michel Pacqué, Craig Elmets, Zwannah D. Dukuly, Beatriz Muñoz, Albert T. White, Hugh R. Taylor, Bruce M. Greene

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


purpose: Skin disease is the most common clinically important manifestation of onchocerciasis. Ivermectin, a newly available drug, is well tolerated and effective in Onchocerca volvulus infection. However, little information is available regarding its effect on onchocercal skin disease. The purpose of this study was to examine, in patients with well-characterized onchodermatitis, the effect of a single dose of ivermectin. subjects and methods: Twenty-one persons with severe onchodermatitis were followed over a 6-month period. In order to evaluate the effect of ivermectin on their skin lesions, photographic transparencies were made before treatment and at 3 and 6 months after treatment. These were then evaluated in a blinded fashion. results: Following a single dose of 150 μg/kg, there was a significant improvement in dermatitis in the first 3 months after treatment. All 14 persons with the worst skin disease showed improvement. The drug had no demonstrable effect on depigmented lesions over the period of observation. Treatment was well tolerated. conclusion: Single-dose ivermectin shows promise as the first acceptable treatment for severe onchocercal dermatitis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)590-594
Number of pages5
JournalThe American journal of medicine
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1991

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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