A Global Review of Quality-of-Life Impact
Miles L, Purser M
One in four children in developed countries is diagnosed with atopic dermatitis, or AD, which is characterized by chronic dry, itchy skin. Half of the children with AD experience significant impact to their quality-of-life, including decreased social functioning and impaired psychological health. In fact, the quality-of-life impact is reported to be greater than that caused by other chronic conditions such as renal disease, diabetes, and cystic fibrosis.
We reviewed the existing literature to better understand the quality-of-life impact of AD in children around the world. The data included measurements from newborn to 16-year-old girls and boys in the Americas, Europe, and Asia. Measurement scales, such as the Eczema Area and Severity Index and the Scoring Atopic Dermatitis scale, as well as common quality-of-life instruments were used. Disease severity and quality-of-life impact were correlated, with severe itching, embarrassment, and mood alterations reported as the main factors impacting quality-of-life.
AD-related quality-of-life impact can start as early as infancy, and sometimes persists throughout life, in countries around the world.
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