Efficacy and Safety of JAK Inhibitors in the Treatment of Alopecia Areata in Children


eMediNexus    20 January 2023

Alopecia areata (AA) is a nonscarring hair loss interceded by T lymphocytes. Recent evidence has shown that Janus kinase inhibitors are effective in treating AA in children.


The present study conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis according to the PRISMA guidelines. It defined good response as a more than 50% decrease in Severity of Alopecia Tool (SALT) score or complete regrowth or more than 50% regrowth; partial response as a 5% to 50% decrease in SALT score and any response to treatment as more than 5% in SALT score decrease.


The study observed:


  • 81.9% responders, 68.5% good responders and 7.7% partial responders among the 10 included studies.
  • Longer treatment duration in good responders than in partial responders.
  • The oral route showed a link with a better response to topical medication, with an odds ratio of 7.8.
  • Regarding toxicity, reported adverse events contained only mild symptoms.
  • The most common adverse events were liver transaminase elevation, upper respiratory tract infection and eosinophilia.


This study shows a promising effect of Janus kinase inhibitors in treating AA in children, with the most common side effects being minor and reversible.


Source: Chen Y, Zhu H, Shen Y, et al. Efficacy and safety of JAK inhibitors in the treatment of alopecia areata in children: a systematic review and meta-analysis. J Dermatolog Treat. 2022;33(8):3143-9.

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