Background Laryngeal papillomatosis is a neoplasm of the larynx that is due to infection by the human papillomavirus (HPV). It can appear during the first year of life, or during adulthood, which increases the probability of becoming malignant. It is characterised by tumours within the voice box, vocal cords or the air duct, causing breathing problems, dysphagia, stridor and sore throat. The treatment of choice is surgery, but some patients require adjuvant treatment, such as cidofovir or alpha interferon.
Purpose To describe the efficacy and safety of treatment with interferon alpha 2A in laryngeal papillomatosis.
Material and methods A 1-year-old female patient was diagnosed with laryngeal papillomatosis serotype 6 from perinatal transmission with a diagnosis confirmed by bronchoscopy and laboratory tests. The patient showed signs of inspiratory and expiratory stridor, tachypnoea, elongated expiration with subcostal, suprasternal and intercostal retractions. She had to be operated on 6 times for the appearance of polyps on the vocal cords until finally doctors conducted a tracheostomy. Despite the interventions, the patient still maintained inspiratory and expiratory stridor so treatment with alpha interferon was the next step.
Results According to the literature, treatment was started with a first week dose of 100 000 IU/kg, followed by a dose of interferon three times per week, varying the dose with the patient´s weight changes. Treatment showed no lesion progression. The last control bronchoscopy showed no lesions. It allowed prolongation of the frequency of consultations from 1 to 2 months. A possible adverse effect was described, because of the appearance of dominant face erythematous lesions after administration of some doses. Also, the onset of fever following a dose of interferon occurred once.
Conclusion The results showed that interferon alpha 2A was an effective and relatively safe treatment in this patient for the treatment of laryngeal papillomatosis. However, these results cannot be considered final, because the treatment was used in just one patient for 5 months. More studies and patients are needed to consider interferon alpha 2A as a good alternative treatment to patients with laryngeal papillomatosis.
No conflict of interest.
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