News in brief: Skin cancer congress; Treatment for dupilumab facial redness; Cosmetic skin clinics legal dispute

31 Mar 2021

Skin cancer Congress in May

The Australasian Skin Cancer Congress 2021 is scheduled as a hybrid event for May 28th to 30th at The Star Gold Coast

The event will include speakers such as Professor Peter Soyer (cancer risk prediction tools), Professor Rachael Morton (guidelines for  patient follow-up) Dr James Bricknell (treatment for actinic keratosis), Professor Pascale Guitera (rethinking skin surveillance for high-risk melanoma patients). The Congress will also feature several other specialists discussing the ‘shave biopsy debate’.

Antifungal takes blush off dupilumab treatment

Itraconazole may be an effective treatment for dupilumab facial redness that occurs as a side effect of the drug, US dermatologist say.

In a review of 413 patients prescribed dupilumab, they found that 5.3% patients were diagnosed with DFR at an average of eight months after starting treatment. Treatment with itraconazole (200mg daily for two weeks) produced relief of symptoms in over half (52%) of patients, but treatment with fluconazole provided no benefit, they found. Benefit from itraconazole may be due to its anti-inflammatory effects, such as inhibiting IL-8 and pro-inflammatory metabolite production, the study investigators said in the Journal of the American College of Dermatology.

Cosmetic skin clinic operators up in arms

Franchisees of Australia’s largest chain of non-medical cosmetic skin clinics  – Laser Clinics Australia (LCA)  – have taken legal action against the new owners claiming they are being forced into aggressive discounting and being overcharged for equipment and supplies.

According to reports in the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age, 52 franchisees have lodged a claim for $80 million compensation against LCA, which offers hair removal and botox services. They say an adverse change in business practices occurred after the original owners sold out to US private equity firm KKR, which embarked on an  expansion program from 60 clinics to more than 160.

The report notes that Australia’s non-surgical skin cosmetic industry is forecast to grow from $5.4 billion to $7.8 billion by 2024.

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