Trends in eczema in the first 18 years of life: results from the Isle of Wight 1989 birth cohort study
Article first published online: 9 NOV 2010
© 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd
Clinical & Experimental Allergy
Volume 40, Issue 12, pages 1776–1784, December 2010
How to Cite
Ziyab, A. H., Raza, A., Karmaus, W., Tongue, N., Zhang, H., Matthews, S., Arshad, S. H. and Roberts, G. (2010), Trends in eczema in the first 18 years of life: results from the Isle of Wight 1989 birth cohort study. Clinical & Experimental Allergy, 40: 1776–1784. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2222.2010.03633.x
- Issue published online: 9 NOV 2010
- Article first published online: 9 NOV 2010
- Submitted 15 April 2010; revised 31 July 2010; accepted 13 September 2010
- negative transition;
- positive transition;
Background Trends in the prevalence of eczema in the course of childhood and adolescence are not clear although often a net remission during childhood is assumed.
Objectives To investigate the dynamics of change in eczema from 1 to 18 years in a prospective study and to understand the influence of gender and atopy.
Methods Detailed information regarding eczema were collected at ages 1, 2, 4, 10 and 18 years from the 1989 Isle of Wight birth cohort (n=1456). Skin prick testing was performed at 4, 10 and 18 years of age. The 12-month period prevalence, positive and negative transitions (defined as change in disease status in two consecutive study assessments) were stratified by gender and atopic status.
Results The period prevalence of eczema from birth to 18 years of age remained relatively constant (11.9–14.2%) with minimal remission. Up to 10 years of age, gender did not influence prevalence. From 10 to 18 years, eczema became more prevalent among girls (16.3% for girls vs. 8.3% for boys, P<0.001) as a result of a greater positive transition in girls (9.4% for girls vs. 4.3% for boys, P=0.001) and greater negative transition in boys (65.4% for boys vs. 50% for girls, P=0.04). The higher positive transition of eczema in girls was most pronounced for non-atopic eczema (5.9% for girls vs. 1.5% for boys, P=0.002).
Conclusions We found only a minimal reduction in the prevalence of eczema during childhood and adolescence. During adolescence, more girls develop eczema and more boys outgrow it suggesting a role for gender-specific pubertal factors.
Cite this as: A. H. Ziyab, A. Raza, W. Karmaus, N. Tongue, H. Zhang, S. Matthews, S. H. Arshad and G. Roberts, Clinical & Experimental Allergy, 2010 (40) 1776–1784.