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12.11.2020 | Original Research | Ausgabe 1/2021 Open Access

Dermatology and Therapy 1/2021

The Economic and Psychosocial Comorbidity Burden Among Adults with Moderate-to-Severe Atopic Dermatitis in Europe: Analysis of a Cross-Sectional Survey

Dermatology and Therapy > Ausgabe 1/2021
Giampiero Girolomoni, Thomas Luger, Audrey Nosbaum, David Gruben, William Romero, Lyndon John Llamado, Marco DiBonaventura



Atopic dermatitis (AD) is a common inflammatory disease of the skin, which may have a substantial impact on patients' health-related quality of life (HRQoL). The aim of this study was to quantify the economic burden (direct and indirect costs) of moderate-to-severe AD and evaluate the prevalence and impact of psychosocial comorbidities among patients in the European Union-5 (France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the UK).


Data were analyzed from the 2017 EU5 National Health and Wellness Survey. Respondents with a physician diagnosis of AD/eczema who were considered to have moderate-to-severe AD based on a Dermatology Life Quality Index (DLQI) score  ≥ 6 were included. Direct costs, indirect costs, and psychosocial comorbidities (sleep difficulties and anxiety based on self-report, depression based on the Patient Health Questionnaire-9) were reported descriptively. Generalized linear models were used to examine the relationship between psychosocial comorbidities and health outcomes (the Short Form-36 version 2 [SF-36v2], EuroQoL 5-dimension 5-level, Work Productivity and Activity Impairment questionnaire, and healthcare resource utilization).


Overall, 1014 patients were included in the analysis. Total annual direct costs ranged from €2242 to €6924 and total annual indirect costs ranged from €7277 to €14,236, depending on the level of disease severity. Sleep difficulties, anxiety, and depression were reported by 61.6%, 52.7%, and 75.8% of patients, respectively. These comorbidities were significantly associated with reduced physical and mental component summary scores from SF-36v2 and increased overall work impairment (p < 0.05 for all).


A significant economic burden was observed for patients with moderate-to-severe AD. Sleep difficulties, depression, and anxiety were observed in more than half of moderate-to-severe AD patients and were significantly associated with decrements in HRQoL and with work-related impairment. Reducing the burden of these psychosocial comorbidities in AD could have significant benefit to patients and society.
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