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Acutely ill patients in internal medicine departments want treatment for undiagnosed, symptomatic skin conditions


Goeksu, Yasemin; Zimmerli, Lukas U; Braun, Ralph P; Klaghofer, Richard; French, Lars E; Battegay, Edouard; Navarini, Alexander A (2012). Acutely ill patients in internal medicine departments want treatment for undiagnosed, symptomatic skin conditions. Dermatology, 225(2):115-120.

Abstract

Objective: Concomitant skin conditions may be neglected in internal medicine patients due to lack of knowledge or resources. Thus, we investigated the prevalence of undiagnosed skin conditions in this population. Methods: 200 patients in a university medical center's internal medicine division were examined clinically for dermatoses and quality of life in a prospective, 2-month, single-center study. Results: All patients had several dermatological problems (mean per patient: 13; range: 3-25). There was no relationship between the patient's main medical problem and the number or nature of dermatological conditions. Most patients (84%) requested treatment for their skin condition during hospitalization, especially for xerosis (76%), warts (69%), seborrheic eczema (67%) and onychorrhexis (53%) but not for asymptomatic dermatoses. The impairment in skin-related quality of life was mild but significant, with a mean ± SD Dermatology Life Quality Index of 3 ± 4 (p < 0.001), and global quality of life impairment was severe (p < 0.001). Conclusions: Inpatients suffered from many different, mostly age-related, skin conditions that remained undiagnosed. When prompted, however, patients requested treatment, particularly for symptomatic dermatological conditions such as xerosis, revealing an unmet need that needs to be addressed by qualified evaluation and care.

Objective: Concomitant skin conditions may be neglected in internal medicine patients due to lack of knowledge or resources. Thus, we investigated the prevalence of undiagnosed skin conditions in this population. Methods: 200 patients in a university medical center's internal medicine division were examined clinically for dermatoses and quality of life in a prospective, 2-month, single-center study. Results: All patients had several dermatological problems (mean per patient: 13; range: 3-25). There was no relationship between the patient's main medical problem and the number or nature of dermatological conditions. Most patients (84%) requested treatment for their skin condition during hospitalization, especially for xerosis (76%), warts (69%), seborrheic eczema (67%) and onychorrhexis (53%) but not for asymptomatic dermatoses. The impairment in skin-related quality of life was mild but significant, with a mean ± SD Dermatology Life Quality Index of 3 ± 4 (p < 0.001), and global quality of life impairment was severe (p < 0.001). Conclusions: Inpatients suffered from many different, mostly age-related, skin conditions that remained undiagnosed. When prompted, however, patients requested treatment, particularly for symptomatic dermatological conditions such as xerosis, revealing an unmet need that needs to be addressed by qualified evaluation and care.

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3 citations in Web of Science®
3 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic and Policlinic for Internal Medicine
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Psychiatry and Psychotherapy
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Dermatology Clinic
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:2012
Deposited On:25 Oct 2012 08:00
Last Modified:16 Jun 2016 14:18
Publisher:Karger
ISSN:1018-8665
Free access at:Related URL. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:10.1159/000342177
Related URLs:http://www.zora.uzh.ch/70115/
PubMed ID:23037513
Permanent URL: http://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-65763

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