Burden of atopic dermatitis

As a chronic, relapsing skin condition, atopic dermatitis has a significant impact on patients’ quality of life. However, given the age of most patients, and the fact that it can persist into adulthood, atopic dermatitis also places a heavy burden on patients’ family as well as society (Avena-Woods, 2017). 

“The misery of living with atopic dermatitis cannot be overstated for it may have a profoundly negative effect on the HRQoL of children and their family unit in many cases” (Lewis-Jones, 2006).

In fact, skin and subcutaneous diseases were the fourth leading cause of nonfatal burden in 2013 Global Burden of Disease Study, with dermatitis (atopic, seborrheic and contact) having the largest burden of that group (Karimkhani et al., 2017). Furthermore, a study using the Children’s Life Quality Index (CLQI) among children (aged 5–16 years) with various chronic diseases found generalised eczema to be second to only cerebral palsy in impact on quality of life (Beattie & Lewis-Jones, 2006).