• Erica A. FortsonEmail author
  • Becky Li
  • Mahima Bhayana
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 1027)


Atopic dermatitis (AD) is a chronic relapsing condition that is characterized by itching and redness of the skin. Our modern usage of atopic dermatitis dates back to 1933, when Wise and Sulzberger first coined the term to signify the disease’s close association with other respiratory atopy, such as bronchial asthma and allergic rhinitis. A recent systematic review of 69 cross-sectional and cohort studies has confirmed that AD is now a worldwide phenomenon with lifetime AD prevalences of well over 20% in many affluent country settings. Although there is no obvious consistent overall global trend in the prevalence of AD, studies have shown that climate, urbanization, lifestyle, and socioeconomic class influence the prevalence of atopic dermatitis. Despite the pervasiveness of the disease, an understanding of atopic dermatitis has been hampered by a number of factors. Data suggests that extrinsic environmental factors work in concert with intrinsic immune mechanism and genetic factors to drive disease progression. With such a complex etiology, management of atopic dermatitis currently at best achieves symptomatic control rather than cure. This approach poses a significant burden on healthcare resources, as well as patients’ quality of life. Current management methods of AD often involves a combination of non-pharmacologic modalities and prescription medications. Though they can be effective when employed, there are significant barriers to treatment for patients including time, costs, and medication side effects. Our aim, throughout this text, is to explore the complexities of AD, providing the healthcare provider with tips and tricks to improve patient care and satisfaction and the most current trends and treatment approaches on the horizon.


Atopic dermatitis Besnier’s prurigo Atopic eczema Intrinsic allergic dermatitis Neurodermitis constitutionalis Endogenous eczema Eczema flexurarum Asthma-eczema Hay fever-eczema 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of DermatologyWake Forest University School of MedicineWinston SalemUSA
  2. 2.Department of DermatologyHoward University School of MedicineWashington, DCUSA

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