Dr David Pariser Discusses the Significant Burden of Atopic Dermatitis

The financial, physical, and social burdens of atopic dermatitis can be substantial, especially for patients who had the condition as children into adulthood, said David Pariser, MD, senior physician at Pariser Dermatology Specialists and professor at Eastern Virginia Medical School Department of Dermatology.

The financial, physical, and social burdens of atopic dermatitis can be substantial, especially for patients who had the condition as children into adulthood, said David Pariser, MD, senior physician at Pariser Dermatology Specialists and professor at Eastern Virginia Medical School Department of Dermatology.

Transcript

What is the overall burden of atopic dermatitis in the United States? What is the prevalence among the population?

So atopic dermatitis has a large burden on patients and society in this country. It’s estimated that about 31 million people or so have atopic dermatitis—7 point something percent of the population. A little bit more than those who have psoriasis. Ten million of those approximately are children, and the rest of the rest of our adults.

It really hasn't been recognized until recently that there is an entity of adult-onset atopic dermatitis. Traditionally, we thought that it was a disease of children, many of whom grew out of it as they got older—and that is true for many—but many of those children don't and many adults develop atopic dermatitis for the first time.

Financial burdens for society is great. It’s estimated, the last numbers, over about $5 billion a year in costs for payments and medical procedures for atopic dermatitis.

What is the long-term burden like for children who have atopic dermatitis that continues into adulthood?

Well, in those patients who have atopic dermatitis as lifelong disease, as children, their burden is decreased performance at school. Their burden is family burden. When a child doesn't sleep, nobody sleeps. And then that burden may continue itself through life where constant itching and scratching leading to secondary infection and poor quality of life as well as difficulty with employment can be a lifelong issue.