What's in a name?: Atopic dermatitis or atopic eczema, but not eczema alone

Silverberg, J. I.; Thyssen, J. P.; Paller, A. S.; Drucker, A.; Wollenberg, A.; Lee, K. H.; Kabashima, K.; Todd, G.; Schmid-Grendelmeier, P.; Bieber, T.

Allergy. 2017 Jun 13


BACKGROUND: The ideal nomenclature of atopic dermatitis or atopic eczema (AD/AE) has long been contested. It is becoming increasingly clear that the disparate nomenclature of this disease may have important deleterious ramifications for clinical care, research and drug development. OBJECTIVE: To reach consensus among an international group of experts in AD/AE on the nomenclature for AD/AE. METHODS: A 3-question survey was sent to the councilors and associates of the International Eczema Council. Consensus was reached with at least 90% response and more than 90% agreement on nomenclature. RESULTS: Seventy-one of 77 (92.2%) IEC councilors and associates responded to the survey. Consensus was reached on the preference for the atopic prefix, i.e. AD or AE (69 of 71 [97.2%]). However, consensus was not reached preference of AD (40 [58.0%]) or AE (30 [43,5%]). Sixty-three respondents (88.7%) and 55 (77.5%) felt that the terms AD and AE were acceptable, whereas only 11 (15.5%) felt that eczema was acceptable. CONCLUSIONS: Use of the atopic prefix, i.e. either AE or AD, is recommended. Whereas, use of the term eczema is not recommended. We encourage physicians in all specialties and in every country to shift their own use of terminology to AD or AE in writing, presentations and discussions with patients and other health care personnel as a first step. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

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