Treatment of Raynaud's phenomenon with the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor fluoxetine.
ABSTRACT To compare fluoxetine, a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor, with nifedipine as treatment for primary or secondary Raynaud's phenomenon.
Twenty-six patients with primary and 27 patients with secondary Raynaud's phenomenon were assigned randomly to receive 6 weeks of treatment with fluoxetine (20 mg daily) or nifedipine (40 mg daily). Following a 2-week washout period, each group was crossed over to the other treatment arm. The primary outcome variable was the frequency of attacks of Raynaud's phenomenon. Self-reported attack severity, thermographic recovery from cold challenge and plasma levels of von Willebrand factor and soluble P-selectin were also measured.
There was a reduction in attack frequency and severity of Raynaud's phenomenon in patients treated with either fluoxetine or nifedipine, but the effect was statistically significant only in the fluoxetine-treated group (P=0.0002 for attack severity and P=0.003 for attack frequency). Subgroup analysis showed that the greatest response was seen in females and in patients with primary Raynaud's phenomenon. A significant improvement in the thermographic response to cold challenge was also seen in female patients with primary Raynaud's phenomenon treated with fluoxetine but not in those treated with nifedipine. There was no significant treatment effect on von Willebrand factor or soluble P-selectin. No significant adverse effects occurred in the fluoxetine-treated group.
This pilot study confirms the tolerability of fluoxetine and suggests that it would be effective as a novel treatment for Raynaud's phenomenon. Larger and placebo-controlled trials are warranted to assess fluoxetine's therapeutic potential further in this vasospastic condition.
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ABSTRACT: Pathogenic processes that underlie the development and progression of systemic sclerosis (SSc) are being defined in preclinical, clinical and genetic studies. Important evidence of interplay between the vasculature, connective tissue and specialized epithelial structures is emerging, and abnormalities of both the innate and adaptive immune systems have been identified. In this context, information regarding pivotal mediators, pathways or cell types that could be targets for therapeutic intervention, and that might offer potential for true disease modification, is accruing. Precedent for the regression of some aspects of the pathology has been set in clinical studies showing that potential exists to improve tissue structure and function as well as to prevent disease progression. This article reviews the concept of targeted therapies and considers potential pathways and processes that might be attenuated by therapeutic intervention in SSc. As well as improving outcomes, such approaches will undoubtedly provide information about pathogenesis. The concept of translational medicine is especially relevant in SSc, and we anticipate that the elusive goal of an effective antifibrotic treatment will emerge from one of the several clinical trials currently underway or planned in this disease. Therapeutic advances in SSc would have implications and potential beyond autoimmune rheumatic diseases.Nature Reviews Rheumatology 04/2013; · 9.75 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Raynaud's syndrome (RS) is characterized by episodic digital ischemia induced by cold or emotional stress. Pathophysiologic mechanisms include temporary vasospasm and fixed digital artery obstruction. A number of pharmacologic and invasive therapies have been studied to treat RS symptoms; however, there are no specific treatments that are currently approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration specifically for RS. Of the available pharmacologic agents, calcium-channel blockers remain the preferred initial treatment for vasospastic RS, although many vasodilators have been studied and found to be efficacious. Vasodilators are less effective in treating digital artery obstruction, and no treatments have been found to be universally beneficial, although the phosphodiesterase V inhibitors have been gaining in popularity. Invasive therapies may have a role in selective cases. In this review, the current evidence of treatment for RS is summarized.Journal of vascular surgery: official publication, the Society for Vascular Surgery [and] International Society for Cardiovascular Surgery, North American Chapter 04/2013; · 3.52 Impact Factor
Article: [In Process Citation].Reumatología Clínica 03/2008; 4(2):59-66.