Intralesional immunotherapy compared to cryotherapy in the treatment of warts.

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Abstract

BACKGROUND

Warts are the most common clinical manifestation of the human papilloma-virus infection in the skin and mucous membranes. In spite of the various therapeutic modalities for nongenital skin warts, there is still no single method to be used as an approved treatment. In this study, we compared the efficacy of immunotherapy and cryotherapy on wart lesions.

METHODS

Sixty patients with verruca vulgaris and plantar warts were randomly divided into two groups. One group received intralesional injection of candida antigen repeated every 3 weeks until complete improvement of all warts or for a maximum of three sessions. The second group was treated by cryotherapy with liquid nitrogen for a maximum of ten sessions or until clearance of all lesions. T-test and chi-square test were used for statistical analysis, and P < 0.05 was considered statistically significant.

RESULTS

The patients showed a significant therapeutic response to immunotherapy compared to cryotherapy (P = 0.023). Moreover, a significant difference was observed between the time-elapsed before treatment and the therapeutic response between both groups (P = 0.041). 76.7% of patients were completely cured with immunotherapy, while only 56.7% responded to cryotherapy. Complete remission was observed with fewer sessions (20.17 ± 0.65) in immunotherapy compared to cryotherapy (3.82 ± 2.481), but no statistically significant difference was shown between groups. Immunotherapy was well-tolerated except for the pain during injection that was the most common side effect.

CONCLUSIONS

Intralesional immunotherapy is an effective treatment of warts. This method has a better therapeutic response, needs fewer sessions, and is capable of treating distant warts.

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