Atopy Patch Tests in Young Adult Patients with Atopic Dermatitis and Controls: Dose-response Relationship, Objective Reading, Reproducibility and Clinical Interpretation
ANETTE BYGUM, ANETTE BYGUM, ANETTE BYGUM
The clinical interpretation and reproducibility of atopy patch tests was studied in 23 selected young adult patients with atopic dermatitis and 25 healthy controls using standard inhalant allergens. Non-invasive measurements were used for objective assessment of test reactions and the participants were retested after 6 weeks. Ten of 19 (53%) evaluable patients with atopic dermatitis had at least one positive atopy patch test. However, there was no clear clinical relevance of the atopy patch test results when related to patient history and distribution of dermatitis. Reproducible and dose-dependent results were obtained with Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus, grass and cat with a reproducibility rate of 0.69 to 0.81 in patients and 0.60-0.96 in controls. A unique finding was a significant positive correlation between a positive atopy patch test, allergen dose and increase in transepidermal water loss and erythema, while measurement of capacitance did not distinguish between positive and negative reactions. The results of the present study do not support the routine use of atopy patch tests in the evaluation of adult patients with atopic dermatitis.