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Topical capsaicin cream was effective for chronic idiopathic intractable pruritis ani

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 Q In patients with chronic idiopathic intractable pruritus ani, what is the effectiveness of topical capsaicin?

Clinical impact ratings GP/FP/Primary care ★★★★★★☆


Embedded ImageDesign:

randomised, placebo controlled, crossover trial.

Embedded ImageAllocation:


Embedded ImageBlinding:

blinded (patients and healthcare providers).*

Embedded ImageFollow up period:

4 and 9 weeks.

Embedded ImageSetting:

proctological outpatient clinics in a hospital and affiliated ambulatory clinic in Jerusalem, Israel.

Embedded ImagePatients:

44 patients (mean age 50 y, 55% women) who had chronic idiopathic anal itching for ⩾3 months that had not responded to traditional treatment.

Embedded ImageIntervention:

a thin layer of perianal topical capsaicin cream, 0.006% 3 times each day for 4 weeks (n = 22) or menthol cream 1% (placebo) (n = 22). After a 1 week washout period, patients received the alternative treatment for 4 weeks. No patients received topical steroids or anaesthetics …

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  • * See glossary.

  • For correspondence: Dr E Goldin, Hadassah University Hospital, Jerusalem, Israel.

  • Source of funding: no external funding.

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