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Dermatology Online Journal

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The prevalence of atopic dermatitis in adults: systematic review on population studies


Atopic dermatitis (AD) is a common multifactorial skin disease occurring primarily in young children. AD has increased in prevalence over the past decades, but little knowledge exists on the prevalence of AD in adults. Herein, published estimates of the point-prevalence and one-year prevalence of AD in adults are reviewed in the context of various study characteristics such as the age and gender distribution of the populations, sampling methods, study design, and geographical area of origin. In total, 14 different population studies reporting the prevalence of AD in adults in 17 countries were identified. There was a substantial between-country variation in both the point-prevalence (1.6 to 11.5%) and one-year prevalence (2.2 to 17.6%) of AD with heterogeneity explained partly by gender, age, geography, study design, and diagnostic criteria.

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