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International Study of Life With Atopic Eczema (ISOLATE) Shows Patients and Caregivers Are Often Overwhelmed By Eczema Flare-Ups and Treatment Options; Study finds strong emotional impact of atopic dermatitis/eczema.

NEW ORLEANS, Feb. 23 /PRNewswire/ -- According to the results of a new multinational survey called the International Study of Life with Atopic Eczema (ISOLATE) a majority of eczema sufferers and caregivers (51% of patients and 63% of caregivers) live in a state of constant concern over when they might experience their next disease flare-up. The study also revealed that up to 75 percent of eczema patients and caregivers lack confidence in the ability to effectively manage their disease when it does flare up. These results were presented this week at the 63rd annual meeting of the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) by Dr. Seth Orlow of New York University.

ISOLATE is the largest and most comprehensive study of its kind, including 2,000 participants from eight countries (France, Germany, Spain, Mexico, Netherlands, Poland, United Kingdom and United States). The data presented at the AAD meeting are from a sub-analysis of approximately 400 patients and caretakers of patients from the United States. The National Eczema Association for Science and Education (NEASE) was one of the leading groups involved in the development and implementation of this study, along with other patient-focused organizations around the world.

"Many people can't realize the profound impact eczema can have on the lives of patients and, in the case of children, their caregivers, minimizing it as just a minor nuisance. This survey demonstrates the seriousness of the condition and the tremendous need for effective treatment options that patients can use safely to control their disease long term. This study also validates the quality of life issues to qualify for health insurance coverage for treatment. It shows that atopic dermatitis/eczema is not a minor irritation but a serious physical and emotional burden to patients and their caregivers," said Vicki Kalabokes, Chief Executive Officer of NEASE.

The majority of patients (80%) and caregivers (73%) surveyed felt that effective eczema control would represent the single most important improvement to their quality of life. Yet, only 24% of patients and 27% of caregivers said they feel totally confident that they can manage the condition.

Further, the majority of patients (64%) and those caring for children (78%) with moderate or severe eczema said they would want to use a non-steroidal treatment that could either prevent a flare-up occurring or reduce its severity. They also reported that while their physicians had provided information about the condition, they had not addressed with them the emotional impact of the disease, or that support groups were available to help.

About Eczema

Eczema is a chronic, persistent allergic disease that affects more than one million school-age children in the United States. The condition makes the skin red, dry and itchy. Scratching leads to broken, oozing and bleeding skin. Apart from the intense physical discomfort, patients are often acutely aware of the appearance of their skin, which may become inflamed, flaky and blotchy during a flare. Patients desperately seek relief and many times have to use a combination of steroid and non-steroidal medication to maintain control.

About the National Eczema Association for Science and Education (NEASE)

NEASE works to improve the health and quality of life of persons living with eczema, including those who have the disease as well as their loved ones. The results of this survey show that more than a quarter of the patients with atopic dermatitis/eczema have been bullied or teased, and many adult patients have suffered discrimination at work and found their careers hampered by the disease. The survey also showed that 93% of patients and caregivers are not aware of atopic dermatitis/eczema patient support organizations like NEASE.

For more information about eczema and how NEASE can help visit NEASE's website at http://www.nationaleczema.org/ or call 1-800-818-7546.
 Contact: Vicki Kalabokes
 Chief Executive Officer
 Office: 415-499-3474
 Cell: 415-971-6944
 Email: vicki@naaf.org
 or: info@nationaleczema.org



CONTACT: Vicki Kalabokes, Chief Executive Officer, Office: +1-415-499-3474, Cell: +1-415-971-6944, vicki@naaf.org, or info@nationaleczema.org

Web site: http://www.nationaleczema.org/
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Feb 23, 2005
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