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How long before Taltz works?

Medically reviewed by Carmen Pope, BPharm. Last updated on March 28, 2023.

How long will it take for my symptoms to improve after starting Taltz?

Official answer

  • Treatment with Taltz starts to improve symptoms in patients with psoriasis within about 1-2 weeks, according to clinical trial results.
  • Nearly 90% of patients with psoriasis have significantly clearer skin after 12 weeks of treatment, according to clinical trial results.
  • After 4 weeks of treatment with Taltz in a real-world setting, people also started to experience improvement in their symptoms.
  • After 12 weeks of treatment with Taltz in a real-world setting, all 15 patients reviewed reached PASI 50.

Two large clinical trials found Taltz worked faster than etanercept in patients with psoriasis

Two large clinical trials, called UNCOVER-2 and UNCOVER-3, have investigated how effective Taltz (ixekizumab) is for the treatment of moderate-to-severe-psoriasis. Both of these trials compared treatment with Taltz against treatment with etanercept (Enbrel) and found that Taltz was not only more effective than etanercept, but that it worked faster too.

It took patients treated with Taltz a median of 2.1 weeks to reach Psoriasis Area and Severity Index (PASI) 50. PASI is a tool used to measure both the severity and extent of psoriasis. Reaching a PASI 50 at 2.1 weeks means all the patients achieved a 50% or more reduction in their PASI score compared with the score they recorded at the beginning of the trial. Patients treated with etanercept, by comparison, took 8.1 weeks to reach PASI 50.

Results also showed that after 12 weeks of treatment, patients treated with Taltz every 2 weeks had better outcomes than patients treated with Taltz every 4 weeks. Although, both Taltz groups had better outcomes than patients treated with etanercept. After 12 weeks of treatment with Taltz every 2 weeks, nearly 90% of patients achieved PASI 75, nearly 70% achieved PASI 90 and nearly 40% achieved PASI 100. These results show that 40% of patients had complete clearance of their disease, and many others showed marked improvement, just 12 weeks after starting treatment with Taltz.

Another trial found that Taltz worked faster than guselkumab in psoriasis

As early as week 1 of treatment, 4.8% patients with moderate-to-severe psoriasis treated with Taltz achieved PASI 75, compared with only 1.0% of patients treated with guselkumab (Tremfya), according to the results of a trial comparing the two drugs which enrolled about 1000 patients (p<0.001). Significantly more patients taking Taltz also achieved PASI 90 as early as week 2 (5.2% vs 0.6%, p <0.001). By week 24, the two drugs were found to be comparable in terms of complete skin clearance, but Taltz was superior when it came to clearing nails.

How quickly does Taltz work in the real world outside of clinical trials?

Sometimes the results people achieve following treatment with a drug in a real world setting differ from those obtained under the strict controls of a clinical trial. Results from two small reviews of patients treated in the real world setting - outside of a clinical trial - indicate that patients with psoriasis may experience symptom improvement starting as early as 4 weeks after treatment is started.

A chart review performed on 38 patients who attended a dermatology clinic in Canada and who were treated with Taltz to manage their psoriasis, was one of the small reviews that reported some patients showed signs of improvement 4 weeks after starting treatment . Patients were followed for an average of 32 weeks, during which time 70% of patients achieved PASI 100.

In a separate small review of 15 psoriasis patients treated with Taltz in a real-world setting, all patients showed improvement in their symptoms after 4 weeks’ treatment. After 12 weeks, all of the patients reached PASI 50, 80% reached PASI 75, 13% reached PASI 90 and 6.9% reached PASI 100. Both groups of researchers cautioned that further research was needed to confirm their results, however.

  • Papp KA, Leonardi CL, Blauvelt A, et al. Ixekizumab treatment for psoriasis: integrated efficacy analysis of three double-blinded, controlled studies (UNCOVER-1, UNCOVER-2, UNCOVER-3). Br J Dermatol. 2018 Mar;178(3):674-681. doi: 10.1111/bjd.16050.
  • Gulliver W, Penney M, Power R, et al. Moderate-to-severe plaque psoriasis patients treated with ixekizumab: early real-world outcomes and adverse events. J Dermatolog Treat. 2020 Apr 22:1-7. doi: 10.1080/09546634.2020.1755009.
  • Diotallevi F, Campanati A, Radi G, et al. Ixekizumab for treatment of moderate to severe plaque psoriasis: real world clinical experience. G Ital Dermatol Venereol. 2018 Nov 9. doi: 10.23736/S0392-0488.18.06094-7.
  • Blauvelt A, Leonardi C, Elewski B, et al. A head-to-head comparison of ixekizumab vs. guselkumab in patients with moderate-to-severe plaque psoriasis: 24-week efficacy and safety results from a randomized, double-blinded trial [published online ahead of print, 2020 Sep 2]. Br J Dermatol. 2020;10.1111/bjd.19509. doi:10.1111/bjd.19509.

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