Background: Atopic dermatitis (AD) is a chronic, relapsing disease with genetic and environmental background. Many factors may act as triggers and affect the course of the disease. However, little is known about the factors affecting the disease severities in Korean childhood AD. Objective: The aim was to document the distinct characteristics of childhood AD in Korea and to determine which manifestations are prone to be present in the settings of different severity of the disease. Method: The clinical manifestations, past medical and family history, and inducing or aggravating factors were studied in patients, who participated in the open lectures for childhood AD patients in three provinces of Korea. The severity of the disease was evaluated using the Eczema Area and Severity Index (EASI) and the factors affecting the severity of the disease were determined. Skin prick tests with four allergens, Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus, milk, peanut and egg, were also carried out. Results: Of the 93 patients, 38.7% had the disease onset between the age of three and six, while 17.2% had it between the age of seven and fifteen. Sixty five percent of the patients had family members with a history of atopic diseases, such as AD, asthma, allergic rhinitis and allergic conjunctivitis. In order of frequency, the patients either had a history of or presently accompanying infantile eczema, allergic rhinitis, asthma or allergic conjunctivitis. Among the patients, 27% took herbal medication. The most frequently involved site was the flexural area. The most common aggravating factors were sweating in hot environment, wool fabric and stress. When AD patients were categorized into mild, moderate and severe groups by EASI, the older onset age, the longer duration, facial distribution, history of taking herbal medication, cholinergic condition, wool fabric and stress were found to be significant factors influencing the severity of the disease. Skin prick test with the four major allergens revealed the highest prevalence in Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus. Conclusion: The age of onset of AD was higher than that has been reported. Many suffered from infantile dermatitis and had other accompanying atopic diseases. Aggravating factors should be avoided to minimize the risk of disease aggravation. Based on the fact that late onset age, duration, facial distribution, history of taking herbal medication, cholinergic condition, wool and stress were the statistically significant factors, we may predict the severity or the course of the disease.
|Number of pages||13|
|Journal||Korean Journal of Dermatology|
|Publication status||Published - 2005 Nov|
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes