Cyclosporine for Psoriasis
Cyclosporine is available as a shot or as a liquid or pill that you take by mouth. The dosage of cyclosporine depends on your body weight.
How It Works
Cyclosporine suppresses the
immune system and may slow the rapid growth of skin
Why It Is Used
Cyclosporine is very rarely used. It is used to treat severe plaque
psoriasis that has not improved with the use of
Cyclosporine should not be used by pregnant women or women of
How Well It Works
Cyclosporine is effective in clearing psoriasis and may help
Side effects of cyclosporine include:
- Suppression of the immune
- Kidney problems.
- High blood
- Nonmelanoma skin cancer, especially for people who also
had psoralen and UVA (PUVA) therapy.
While you are taking cyclosporine, get your blood pressure and
kidney function checked regularly.
Talk to your doctor or pharmacist about drinking grapefruit juice
while you are taking cyclosporine. Grapefruit juice can increase the level of
this medicine in your blood. Having too much medicine in your blood increases
your chances of having serious side effects.
See Drug Reference for a full list of side effects. (Drug Reference
is not available in all systems.)
What To Think About
Cyclosporine can suppress the body's immune system, which makes fighting infections more difficult. Cyclosporine should be prescribed only by a doctor experienced in managing psoriasis.
The safety of long-term treatment with cyclosporine is not
Cyclosporine is not usually used to treat severe psoriasis in
people who have a
weakened immune system, such as people with
HIV or cancer.
Complete the new medication information form (PDF)(What is a PDF document?) to help you understand this medication.
Naldi L, Rzany B (2009). Psoriasis (chronic plaque),
search date August 2007. Online version of BMJ Clinical Evidence: http://www.clinicalevidence.com.
Primary Medical Reviewer
||Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer
||Amy McMichael, MD - Dermatology
||January 9, 2012