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June 1993

Are Viral Warts Seen More Commonly in Children With Eczema?

Author Affiliations

From St John's Institute of Dermatology, St Thomas' Hospital (Dr Williams), the Department of Public Health Sciences, St George's Hospital Medical School (Drs Pottier and Strachan), London, United Kingdom.

Arch Dermatol. 1993;129(6):717-720. doi:10.1001/archderm.1993.01680270055006

• Background and Design.—  We sought to test the hypothesis that warts are seen more commonly in individuals with eczema by analyzing skin examination data from a national birth cohort study of 9263 British children born between March 3 and 9, 1958.

Results.—  Warts were seen less frequently in those with visible eczema at ages 11 and 16 years (relative risk, 0.60; 95% confidence intervals, 0.37 to 0.95; P=.03). This inverse association persisted after adjustment for potential confounders and was consistent within each age and sex group for children with a history of eczema who did not have visible eczema at the time of examination and for children with asthma/wheezy bronchitis regardless of eczema status. Visible acne or psoriasis was not associated with a decreased prevalence of warts.

Conclusions.—  These findings contradict previous suggestions of an increased risk of viral warts in atopic eczema and raise new questions regarding the role of cell-mediated immunity in atopic subjects.(Arch Dermatol. 1993;129:717-721)