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G Ital Dermatol Venereol. 2013 Jun;148(3):243-8.

Impact of TNF-α antagonists on the quality of life in selected skin diseases.

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Department of Medicine, Section of Dermatology and Venereology, University of Verona, Verona, Italy.


Aim of the study was to investigate the impact of TNF-α antagonists on health-related quality of life (HRQoL) in selected skin diseases, i.e. chronic plaque psoriasis, Behçet's disease (BD), hidradenitis suppurativa (HS) and pyoderma gangrenosum (PG). We have carried out a systematic literature search of Medline (2000 to April 2013) using the Cochrane highly sensitive and specific search strategy. Citations were screened for randomized, controlled trials of TNF-α antagonists (adalimumab, etanercept and infliximab) versus placebo in adults with psoriasis, BD, HS or PG. From the literature it is evident that skin diseases can affect physical, psychological, social and occupational aspects of everyday life. TNF-α antagonists induced consistent benefits across health outcomes in psoriasis, but only monoclonal antibodies, infliximab and adalimumab were effective in improving QoL in patients with BD, HS and PG. Dermatology Life Quality Index was the most common used tool for investigating HRQoL. For the majority of patients with skin diseases, the most important negative impacts on QoL were appearance related. Generally, the burden on QoL was correlated to the severity of skin disease and the improvement in QoL achieved by TNF-α blockers was proportional to the degree of disease remission. HRQoL issues are becoming even more important in evaluating medical care, including treatment of skin diseases. In general, achieving the highest clearing of skin disease with anti-TNF-α agents is required for optimal improvement in QoL.

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