Hand Pruritus: Clinical Profile, Functional Impairment and Disease-related Burden in a Prospective Cohort Study of 395 Patients
Teresa Gabriele Nau, Viola Rau, Claudia Zeidler, Sonja Ständer, Manuel P. Pereira
Human hands are complex structures essential for a variety of functions in everyday life. This study prospectively investigated the clinical features of hand pruritus and the resulting functional impairment and disease-related burden in 395 patients with chronic pruritus (210 females, median age 59 years). Moderate to very severe hand pruritus was reported by 91.2% of patients, while 79% perceived additional sensory symptoms, such as burning, pain or tingling. A long duration of pruritus occurred in most cases (>6 months: 71.4%). A considerable proportion of patients showed moderate to severe impairment in the use of their hands (40.2%), performance of daily activities (65.0%) and quality of life (45.2%). Disease severity and burden is particularly high when both the palms and the backs of the hands are affected, and when pain is present simultaneously. Pruritus located on the hands is impairing and burdensome due to the functional relevance of the hands in everyday life.
Human hands are complex and essential for daily activities. This study investigated the clinical features of hand itch in 395 patients with chronic pruritus. In the majority of cases, long-lasting moderate to very severe hand itch intensity, and additional symptoms, such as burning, pain or tingling, were observed. A considerable proportion of patients showed moderate to severe impairment in the use of the hands, performance of daily activities and in quality of life. Disease severity and burden is particularly high when both the palms and the backs of the hand are affected and when pain is present simultaneously.