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Otorinolaringologia 1999 September;49(3):139-45


language: Italian

Recurrent respiratory papillomatosis. Possibilities of interferon therapy

Stomeo F., Meloni F., Bozzo C., Bitti S.

Università degli Studi - Sassari Istituto di Oftalmologia, Otorinolaringoiatria, Urologia Sezione di Otorinolaringoiatria


Background. Recurrent Respiratory Papillomatosis (RRP) is a disease affecting upper and lower airways; its proved viral etiopathogenesis has always represented either a subject of study for many researchers, or a challenge concerning the modalities of treatment, as its irreducible tendency to recur has been known since a long time. Depending on its time of onset and different patterns of clinical presentation, RRP can be differentiated into the “juvenile” and “adult” types. Due to its tendency to recur, RRP, though being classified among benign diseases, exposes patients to reiterated surgical procedures together to medical treatments, in the attempt to control or at least to minimize the problem deriving from the apparently inexhaustible viral replication.
Methods. On the basis of personal experience, the authors propose a treatment with the exclusive use of Interferon, administred to those patients affected by laryngeal localization of RRP with the following: limited laryngeal diffusion, so that tracheotomy can be avoided, and sufficiently good general conditions, in order to allow the treatment with lnterferon, not always free from important side effects.
Results. Such protocol of treatment applied to RRP patients chosen after a careful selection has proved, at least, its ability to postpone the surgical option, thus avoiding the spread of viral particles over the airways, either during the insertion of tracheal tube or the laser vaporisation.
Conclusions. Though the treatment of laryngeal localization of RRP with Interferon presents limited indications, due to both the intrinsic peculiarity of the drug and the kind of the lesion to be treated, it likewise offers undoubted advantages, as the possibility of regressing of laryngeal papyllomas and mantaining under a certain control the viral replication, avoiding in this way the consequencies due to repeated surgical procedures.

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