"These are both powerful oral medications that suppress the body's immune responses. Commonly used to treat people with autoimmune diseases, or to prevent rejection in people that have received an solid organ transplant. In this study, they were used to treat patients with eczema that have failed to improve on conventional methods, which would be the 2-8% most severe of cases. Both medications lower the body's ability to fight off infection, and can have significant side effects. Cyclosporine is specific to T-cells, which help it fight the body's "Th1 inflammation," which makes it an effective therapy for chronic atopic dermatitis. Methotrexate is less specific to T-cells, and blocks the body's use of folate. Use of either medications require frequent monitoring in a physician's office. Cyclosporine is similar to Pimecrolimus and Tacrolimus, which are used topically to treat eczema."
Dr. Frank Lichtenberger MD, PhD
Board Certified Allergist/Immunologist