Abstract:  Atopic dermatitis (AD) is often treated with multiple modalities, including topical medications such as corticosteroids and topical calcineurin inhibitors (TCIs). The aim of this study was to describe the natural history of the utilization characteristics of topical treatment in those with AD. We conducted a longitudinal study of the first 4,105 children with physician-confirmed mild to moderate AD enrolled in an ongoing postmarketing safety study of pimecrolimus. Information was obtained from participants every six months using a questionnaire. Drug utilization was solely determined by the physician and patient. Over the three years of our study, an increasing number of individuals reported at least 6 months of complete control of their disease, without the continued use of a topical medication. While all study participants used pimecrolimus at the start of the study less than 40% continued to use it after 3 years of study participation. If an individual was still using a topical medication after three years of follow-up, it was most likely a topical corticosteroid. For those who continued to use pimecrolimus, the use was limited to about 60 grams of pimecrolimus in 6 months. Community-based use of topical pimecrolimus to treat AD is limited both with respect to the duration of exposure and amount or total dose of the exposure. If a topical therapy is persistent, it is most likely to a topical corticosteroid.