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Psoriasis in childhood: effective strategies to improve treatment adherence

Authors Shah K, Cortina S, Ernst M, Kichler J

Received 28 November 2014

Accepted for publication 19 December 2014

Published 16 March 2015 Volume 2015:5 Pages 43—54


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Prof. Dr. Uwe Wollina

Kara N Shah,1 Sandra Cortina,2,3 Michelle M Ernst,2 Jessica C Kichler2

1Division of Pediatric Dermatology, 2Division of Behavioral Medicine and Clinical Psychology, 3Center for Adherence and Self-Management, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, OH, USA

Abstract: Psoriasis is a relatively common chronic inflammatory skin disease in children for which there is no cure. Most children have mild disease that can be managed with topical therapy as opposed to phototherapy or systemic therapy. Despite the mild presentation of psoriasis in most children, the disease can have a significant impact on quality of life due to the need for ongoing treatment, the frequently visible nature of the cutaneous manifestations, and the social stigma that is associated with psoriasis. Adherence to treatment, in particular topical therapy, is often poor in adults and compromises response to therapy and medical provider management strategies. Multiple factors that may contribute to nonadherence in adults with psoriasis have been identified, including lack of education on the disease and expectations for management, issues related to ease of use and acceptability of topical medications, and anxiety regarding possible medication side effects. There is currently no published data on adherence in the pediatric psoriasis population; however, poor adherence is often suspected when patients fail to respond to appropriate therapy. General strategies used to assess adherence in other pediatric disease populations can be applied to children with psoriasis, and interventions that reflect experience in other chronic dermatologic disorders such as atopic dermatitis may also be helpful for medical providers caring for children with psoriasis.

Keywords: adherence, psoriasis, children

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