Prevalence and some clinical aspects of atopic dermatitis in the community of Sør-Varanger.
Dotterud LK, Kvammen B, Lund E, Falk ES
A study of the prevalence of atopic dermatitis among 7-12-year-old children was carried out in a rural community in Northern Norway close to the Russian border. Of the 424 children investigated, 37% had a past and/or present history of atopic dermatitis (cumulative incidence), whereas 23% were classified as having atopic dermatitis by clinical examination (point prevalence). A history of atopic dermatitis during the past year was reported by 26% of the children. Flexural lichenified dermatitis was present in 88%, and 12% of the children had facial and extensor involvement with or without hand dermatitis. Two thirds of the children showed mild and one third moderate symptoms; only 3 children had severe symptoms confirmed by clinical examination. The ratio of girls with atopic dermatitis to boys with atopic dermatitis was about 1.3:1. Onset of atopic dermatitis within the first 2 years of life occurred in 64% of cases, with no sex differences. Remission of atopic dermatitis occurred in 1 of 8 before the age of 5, with earlier cessation in boys. Mucous membrane atopy alone was reported by 13% of them and in combination with atopic dermatitis also in 13%. Parental history of atopic diseases was reported by 37% of all children, more frequently in mothers than in fathers. In families with no parental history of atopic diseases, 41% of the children appeared to develop some kind of atopic disease; this increased to 63% with a single and to 75% with a double parental history.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS).