Content » Vol 96, Issue 1

Investigative Report

Relationship Between Psychosocial Burden of Skin Conditions and Symptoms: Measuring the Attributable Fraction

Francesca Sampogna, Stefano Tabolli, Patrizia Giannantoni, Andrea Paradisi, Damiano Abeni
DOI: 10.2340/00015555-2094


Skin conditions often have a severe impact on the physical and psychosocial domains of patients’ quality of life, but the relationship between these domains has been studied little. This study estimated the fraction of psychosocial burden that may be attributable to symptoms, using the Skindex-17 quality of life questionnaire (symptoms and psychosocial scales) in 2,487 outpatients. The excess proportion of psychosocial burden for each skin condition was computed. Overall, 79.8% of the psychosocial burden of patients with severe symptoms may be attributable to the symptoms. For patients with mild symptoms this figure is 49.7%. A great heterogeneity was observed, from –0.9% for patients with scars, up to more than 90% for conditions such as lichen planus and psoriasis. While these results will have to be confirmed in longitudinal studies, they seem to indicate that, by targeting specific symptoms, a substantial portion of the psychosocial burden of skin diseases could be spared.


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