Schultz-Larsen F, Diepgen T & Svensson A. The occurrence of atopic dermatitis in north Europe: An international questionnaire study. J Am Acad Dermatol34: 760-764

Kristianstad University, Kristianstad, Skåne, Sweden
Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology (Impact Factor: 4.45). 06/1996; 34(5 Pt 1):760-4. DOI: 10.1016/S0190-9622(96)90009-2
Source: PubMed


Atopic dermatitis is a common multifactorial disease that seems to be increasing in frequency.
Our purpose was to determine the increased prevalence of atopic dermatitis in North Europe.
Approximately 3000 7-year-old children in Denmark, Germany, and Sweden were enrolled in a cross-sectional questionnaire study that was conducted in the autumn of 1992 with common protocols and standardized procedures.
The response rate was 90%. The frequency of atopic dermatitis was calculated to be 15.6% (95% confidence interval 14.2% to 17%) with some regional differences. Girls more often had flexural eczema and outnumbered boys in a ratio of 1.3:1.0. Boys more often had a personal history of asthma, whereas girls more often had a family history of asthma.
The increasing prevalence of atopic dermatitis has been confirmed. This simple questionnaire model works well, is cost effective, and is sufficiently sensitive and specific to conduct large-scale epidemiologic investigations in school children.

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    • "Atopic dermatitis is one of the most common chronic inflammatory skin diseases with an estimated prevalence of 20% in children and 5% in adults [67,68]. The direct and indirect costs of atopic dermatitis are significant and comparable to other common chronic diseases with large annual economic burdens. "
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    ABSTRACT: In less than half a century, allergy, originally perceived as a rare disease, has become a major public health threat, today affecting the lives of more than 60 million people in Europe, and probably close to one billion worldwide, thereby heavily impacting the budgets of public health systems. More disturbingly, its prevalence and impact are on the rise, a development that has been associated with environmental and lifestyle changes accompanying the continuous process of urbanization and globalization. Therefore, there is an urgent need to prioritize and concert research efforts in the field of allergy, in order to achieve sustainable results on prevention, diagnosis and treatment of this most prevalent chronic disease of the 21st century. The European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology (EAACI) is the leading professional organization in the field of allergy, promoting excellence in clinical care, education, training and basic and translational research, all with the ultimate goal of improving the health of allergic patients. The European Federation of Allergy and Airways Diseases Patients’ Associations (EFA) is a non-profit network of allergy, asthma and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder (COPD) patients’ organizations. In support of their missions, the present EAACI Position Paper, in collaboration with EFA, highlights the most important research needs in the field of allergy to serve as key recommendations for future research funding at the national and European levels. Although allergies may involve almost every organ of the body and an array of diverse external factors act as triggers, there are several common themes that need to be prioritized in research efforts. As in many other chronic diseases, effective prevention, curative treatment and accurate, rapid diagnosis represent major unmet needs. Detailed phenotyping/endotyping stands out as widely required in order to arrange or re-categorize clinical syndromes into more coherent, uniform and treatment-responsive groups. Research efforts to unveil the basic pathophysiologic pathways and mechanisms, thus leading to the comprehension and resolution of the pathophysiologic complexity of allergies will allow for the design of novel patient-oriented diagnostic and treatment protocols. Several allergic diseases require well-controlled epidemiological description and surveillance, using disease registries, pharmacoeconomic evaluation, as well as large biobanks. Additionally, there is a need for extensive studies to bring promising new biotechnological innovations, such as biological agents, vaccines of modified allergen molecules and engineered components for allergy diagnosis, closer to clinical practice. Finally, particular attention should be paid to the difficult-to-manage, precarious and costly severe disease forms and/or exacerbations. Nonetheless, currently arising treatments, mainly in the fields of immunotherapy and biologicals, hold great promise for targeted and causal management of allergic conditions. Active involvement of all stakeholders, including Patient Organizations and policy makers are necessary to achieve the aims emphasized herein.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2012
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    • "Other atopic conditions share a similar trend. Studies have reported a significant increase in the worldwide prevalence of atopic dermatitis.3,4 In the United States, the prevalence of atopic dermatitis is 10–19%,5–7 affecting nearly 17.8–31.6 million people depending on the eczema diagnostic criteria.5 "
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    ABSTRACT: This study assesses the relationship between otitis media and atopic conditions in children by comparing the incidence of tympanostomy tube placement between children with and without atopic conditions: asthma, allergic rhinitis, and atopic dermatitis. Study subjects were a cohort of 323 healthy children who participated in a study of vaccine response. All episodes of tympanostomy tube placement and physician diagnoses of allergic rhinitis and atopic dermatitis were collected through comprehensive medical record review. Asthma status was ascertained through application of established criteria. We compared incidence rates of tympanostomy tube placement between children with and without atopic conditions. We fitted data to a Poisson regression model to calculate relative risk ratios (RRs) and their corresponding 95% confidence intervals (95% CI). Three subjects were excluded who did not have parental authorization for using records for research. Of the remaining 320 subjects, 170 (53%) were male subjects, 268 (94%) were white, 124 (39%) were asthmatic patients, and 20 (6%) had tympanostomy tube placement. Children with asthma before the index date of tympanostomy tube placement were more likely to have tympanostomy tube placement compared with those without asthma (RR, 19.33; 95% CI, 11.41; 32.75; p < 0.001). We found a similar association between asthma ever (before or after index date) and the incidence of tympanostomy tube placement (RR, 1.53; 95% CI, 0.93-2.53; p = 0.095). This was true for children with allergic rhinitis compared with those without allergic rhinitis (RR, 1.70; 95% CI, 1.01-2.86; p = 0.007). Atopic dermatitis was not associated with the incidence of tympanostomy tube placement. Asthma or allergic rhinitis may be unrecognized risk factors for recurrent or persistent otitis media. However, given the small sample size of the study, a cohort study with a larger sample size is necessary.
    Full-text · Article · May 2012 · Allergy and Asthma Proceedings
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    • "In addition, other atopic conditions, which share many of the same underlying mechanisms, have prevalence trends similar to that of asthma. For example, studies have reported a significant increase in the prevalence of atopic dermatitis throughout the world.11,12 In the U.S., the prevalence of atopic dermatitis is 10%-19%,13-15 affecting 17.8-31.6 million people depending on the criteria for eczema.13 "
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    ABSTRACT: Asthma is a multifactorial chronic disease affecting a significant proportion of people in the United States and worldwide. Numerous laboratory and epidemiological studies have attempted to understand the etiology and underlying mechanisms of asthma and to identify effective therapies. However, the impact of asthma on the risk for other diseases has drawn little attention. This paper discusses the potential effects of asthma as a risk factor for other diseases, explores the potential mechanisms, and reviews the implications of the findings to clinical practice, public health, and research.
    Full-text · Article · May 2012 · Allergy, asthma & immunology research
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