Author(s): Berg M, Lindberg M
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Abstract BACKGROUND: Acne is a very common skin disease that has major impact on the patients' quality of life. Although the disease has been extensively studied we still need more knowledge of factors influencing the decisions for choice of therapy. OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the relationships between clinical severity, patients' self-reported quality of life, treatment choice and the outcome of therapy in a structured out-patient acne clinic. METHODS: In total 211 consecutive patients (143 females, 68 males) at a structured acne clinic were included. At the first visit a clinical assessment was conducted, therapy was initiated and the patients answered a quality-of-life questionnaire (Dermatology Life Quality Index, DLQI). A follow up was performed after six months, when patients once again answered the DLQI questionnaire and the clinical outcome was assessed by the physician. RESULTS: The quality of life was improved after treatment at a group level. At the first visit, the quality of life showed a gender difference (females scoring worse) but did not correlate to the clinical grading nor to the choice of therapy. At six months the DLQI correlated with clinical outcome. Patients with isotretinoin therapy showed a significantly greater improvement in quality of life. There was a tendency to gender difference in the choice of therapy, as in females 32\% of the patients were treated with isotretinoin although they were clinically graded as moderate. The corresponding figure for males was 23\%. A correlation was found between the initial clinical grading and gender, age and the choice of therapy. CONCLUSION: DLQI can be used to evaluate treatment effects in acne. However, the self-reported quality of life will depend on several factors including age, gender, psychosocial factors and clinical severity. © 2010 The Authors. Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology © 2010 European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology.
This article was published in J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol
and referenced in Dermatology and Dermatologic Diseases