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Clin Exp Dermatol. 2019 Jun;44(4):376-380. doi: 10.1111/ced.13886. Epub 2019 Jan 31.

What's new in atopic eczema? An analysis of systematic reviews published in 2016. Part 3: nomenclature and outcome assessment.

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Churchill Hospital, Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Oxford, UK.
Department of Paediatric Dermatology, Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children, London, UK.
Centre of Evidence Based Dermatology, University of Nottingham, King's Meadow Campus, Nottingham, UK.


This review forms part of a series of annual updates that summarize the evidence base for atopic eczema (AE). It presents the key findings from 11 systematic reviews published in 2016 that focus on AE outcome assessment, disease impact and nomenclature. Systematic reviews on the treatment and prevention of AE are summarized in Part 1 of this update, and systematic reviews on the epidemiology of and risk factors for AE are summarized in Part 2. Six reviews summarized what outcome measurement instruments have been used in published AE trials, or summarized validation studies for the available instruments. These reviews were used to inform consensus decisions by the Harmonising Outcome Measures for Eczema initiative. Although validated instruments exist for clinical signs and patient-reported symptoms, there are currently no validated instruments for capturing quality of life or long-term control. Four reviews examined the impact of AE on children and their families, but few studies were included. One birth cohort study found no association between AE and educational attainment at 11 years. AE has a moderate impact on health-related quality of life and a substantial impact on family life. AE is a major risk factor for occupational hand dermatitis, and it is advised that young atopic individuals are informed about high-risk occupations. Further efforts are required to standardize the nomenclature for AE, which is also commonly known as 'atopic dermatitis' or 'eczema', and preferred terms vary around the world.


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