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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Treatment of calcinosis with diltiazem.

OBJECTIVE. To test the hypothesis that the calcium antagonist diltiazem is effective in the treatment of calcinosis. METHODS. Diltiazem, 240-480 mg/day, was given to 4 patients with idiopathic or CREST-related (calcinosis, Raynaud's phenomenon, esophageal dysmotility, sclerodactyly, telangiectasias) calcinosis for 1-12 years. Serial radiographs of the affected areas, using identical technique, and clinical evaluations were obtained. A fifth patient, who did not tolerate diltiazem, received verapamil, 120 mg/day for 18 months. RESULTS. All patients taking diltiazem had a reduction or disappearance of the calcific lesions, with striking clinical improvement. One patient's case was followed for 12 years. The response to diltiazem during the first 5 years of treatment has been previously reported in detail; however, over 7 years of additional treatment, there was further reduction of the lesions. One patient developed a large calcific lesion while receiving verapamil for hypertension, and after verapamil was replaced with diltiazem, there was a dramatic response. Verapamil was ineffective in the fifth patient, who did not tolerate diltiazem. CONCLUSION. Long-term treatment with diltiazem, but not verapamil, is effective in calcinosis.[1]


  1. Treatment of calcinosis with diltiazem. Palmieri, G.M., Sebes, J.I., Aelion, J.A., Moinuddin, M., Ray, M.W., Wood, G.C., Leventhal, M.R. Arthritis Rheum. (1995) [Pubmed]
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