Eczema: Studies for New Treatment

October 17, 2014 2:26 AM

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We face a very exciting and very optimistic time in the treatment of eczema, or atopic dermatitis (AD). Initially we thought eczema -- an inflammatory skin disease that affects four to seven percent of adults, and 15 to 25 percent of children worldwide (with the highest numbers in Asia) -- was caused by defects in the epidermal skin barrier, or the outer layer of the skin. Now we know that eczema is an immune-driven disease that in turn causes secondary defects in the epidermal barrier. That's a real paradigm shift.

A substantial proportion of the U.S. population, 31.6 million, has eczema; at least 17.8 million have moderate to severe cases. The prevalence of childhood eczema in the U.S. is 10.7 percent overall and as high as 18.1 percent in some states. For many years, eczema was considered mainly a disease of...

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