At the present time corticosteroids are generally considered the best agents for controlling pemphigus.1 Morbidostasis often necessitates the use of high doses for long periods, causing inevitable dangers inherent in the therapy itself.1,2 The risks of such treatment are fully justified in pemphigus vulgaris, for without corticosteroids a rapid malignant progression almost invariably ensues.3
Pemphigus erythematosus, however, tends to run a relatively slow and benign course4,5 and shows a capricious response to corticosteroids.2,6 In this disease the complications of corticosteroid therapy may outweigh the benefits. Thus, a safe and effective alternative form of management would be highly desirable.
Shortly after the publication of Counter's favorable report7 on the Brazilian treatment of fogo selvagem with Jamarsan, the problem of therapy in 2 patients with typical pemphigus erythematosus arose here. Since there is no apparent clinical or histopathologic difference between pemphigus erythematosus and the "frustre"